- any tree or shrub belonging to the genus Quercus, of the beech family, bearing the acorn as fruit.
- the hard, durable wood of such a tree, used in making furniture and in construction.
- the leaves of this tree, especially as worn in a chaplet.
- anything made of the wood of this tree, as an item of furniture, a door, etc.
- sport one's oak, British. (of a university student) to indicate that one is not at home to visitors by closing the outer door of one's lodgings.
Origin of oak
Examples from the Web for oaks
At one community fair, in Thousand Oaks, Ruby met a man, a wrestler, who would become her next husband.Gay Talese on Charlie Manson’s Home on the Range
October 31, 2014
A listener from Thousand Oaks put me in touch with the Dachshund rescue center where I adopted Lisa-Marie.Here's How Kevin James Would Make Los Angeles Better for Animals
February 11, 2013
Now we paralleled the river, beyond whose far edge grew many slender-trunked nara trees; apparently they were Japanese oaks.Japan's Nuclear Ghost Towns
William T. Vollmann
May 2, 2011
It would be the first time an Oaks and Derby winner would face off in the Preakness.Can These Two Horses Save Racing?
June 4, 2009
They drop from the oaks like fruit that is ready to be eaten!The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper
In Hancock County, Ill., oaks have been succeeded by hickories.
This is specially true of cedars and oaks, as well as of elms and maples.
It is an evil season when such acorns grow upon English oaks.'Micah Clarke
Arthur Conan Doyle
Come with me to the hammock under the oaks in the yard and I will tell it.Chit-Chat; Nirvana; The Searchlight
Mathew Joseph Holt
- the Oaks a horse race for fillies held annually at Epsom since 1779: one of the classics of English flat racing
- any of various similar races
- any deciduous or evergreen tree or shrub of the fagaceous genus Quercus, having acorns as fruits and lobed leavesSee also holm oak, cork oak, red oak, Turkey oak, durmast Related adjective: quercine
- the wood of any of these trees, used esp as building timber and for making furniture
- (as modifier)an oak table
- any of various trees that resemble the oak, such as the poison oak, silky oak, and Jerusalem oak
- anything made of oak, esp a heavy outer door to a set of rooms in an Oxford or Cambridge college
- sport one's oakto shut this door as a sign one does not want visitors
- the leaves of an oak tree, worn as a garland
- the dark brownish colour of oak wood
- Australian any of various species of casuarina, such as desert oak, swamp oak, or she-oak
Word Origin and History for oaks
Old English ac "oak tree," from Proto-Germanic *aiks (cf. Old Norse eik, Old Saxon and Old Frisian ek, Middle Dutch eike, Dutch eik, Old High German eih, German Eiche), of uncertain origin with no certain cognates outside Germanic.
The usual Indo-European base for "oak" (*derwo-/*dreu-) has become Modern English tree. Used in Biblical translations to render Hebrew elah (probably usually "terebinth tree") and four other words. The Old Norse form was eik, but as there were no oaks in Iceland the word came to be used there for "tree" in general.