- to murder, as by suffocation, so as to leave no or few marks of violence.
- to suppress or get rid of by some indirect maneuver.
Origin of burke
Examples from the Web for burker
- to murder in such a way as to leave no marks on the body, usually by suffocation
- to get rid of, silence, or suppress
- Edmund . 1729–97, British Whig statesman, conservative political theorist, and orator, born in Ireland: defended parliamentary government and campaigned for a more liberal treatment of the American colonies; denounced the French Revolution
- Robert O'Hara . 1820–61, Irish explorer, who led the first expedition (1860–61) across Australia from south to north. He was accompanied by W. J. Wills, George Grey, and John King; King alone survived the return journey
- William . 1792–1829, Irish murderer and body snatcher; associate of William Hare
Word Origin and History for burker
family name (first recorded 1066), from Anglo-Norman pronunciation of Old English burgh. Not common in England itself, but it took root in Ireland, where William de Burgo went in 1171 with Henry II and later became Earl of Ulster. As shorthand for a royalty reference book, it represents "A General and Heraldic Dictionary of the Peerage and Baronetage of the United Kingdom," first issued 1826, compiled by John Burke (1787-1848). As a verb meaning "murder by smothering," it is abstracted from William Burk, executed in Edinburgh 1829 for murdering several persons to sell their bodies for dissection.