Dirk, dėrk, n. a Highland dagger or poniard: a side-arm worn by midshipmen and cadets of the royal navy.
The mother pressed the poniard upon her daughter, saying, "Now is the time."
All this I promise and swear, under the penalty of being stripped naked, and having my heart pierced with a poniard.
A poniard was buried to the hilt in the left breast of the headsman.
I felt his keen knife slit through the bonds and a poniard was thrust into my hand.
Throwing back his coat the fellow displayed the hilt of a poniard.
Already all the artists have drawn sword or poniard, which the three monks bless in a trice.
The third, a poniard, very meanly adorned, which she begged him to accept.
Goddard had a pike and an arquebus, while De Brsac and I had each a poniard and a rapier.
He drew his poniard as he spoke, and disappeared from their sight.
1580s, from Middle French poinard (early 16c.), from Old French poignal "dagger," literally "anything grasped with the fist," from poing "fist," from Latin pungus "fist," from PIE root *peuk- (see pugnacious). Probably altered in French by association with poindre "to stab." Cf. Latin pugnus "fist," pugio "dagger." As a verb from c.1600.