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shirk

[shurk] /ʃɜrk/
verb (used with object)
1.
to evade (work, duty, responsibility, etc.).
verb (used without object)
2.
to evade work, duty, etc.
noun
3.
a shirker.
Origin of shirk
1625-1635
First recorded in 1625-35; obscurely akin to shark2
Related forms
unshirked, adjective
unshirking, adjective
Synonyms
1. shun, avoid, dodge.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for shirk
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • We have duties to others and duties to ourselves; and we can shirk neither.

  • You work till you are tired of it; then you go off and shirk, and call it studying.

    The Dominant Strain Anna Chapin Ray
  • And here the demagogue arose and bade her shirk no issue, even the red flag.

    The Prisoner Alice Brown
  • I do not court publicity, but I cannot shirk my duty because it entails that.

    The Crevice

    William John Burns and Isabel Ostrander
  • Sick of life—to tell you the truth; but what would have been the good to shirk it—in—in—that way?

    Lord Jim Joseph Conrad
  • If you put any duty upon women they are not going to shirk it.

British Dictionary definitions for shirk

shirk1

/ʃɜːk/
verb
1.
to avoid discharging (work, a duty, etc); evade
noun
2.
a person who shirks
Word Origin
C17: probably from German Schurke rogue; see shark²

shirk2

/ʃɪːk/
noun
1.
(Islam)
  1. the fundamental sin of regarding anything as equal to Allah
  2. any belief that is considered to be in opposition to Allah and Islam
Word Origin
from Arabic: association
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for shirk
v.

1630s, "to practice fraud or trickery," also a noun (1630s, now obsolete) "a needy, disreputable parasite" [OED], perhaps from German schurke "scoundrel, rogue, knave, villain" (see shark (n.)). Sense of "evade one's work or duty" first recorded 1785, originally in slang. Related: Shirked; shirking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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12
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