Sir Gawain spake: "For that may God, who ruleth over all, reward ye."
He spake, and walking to that aged form, Look'd high defiance.
I saw the child myself on Sutton quay, ay, and spake with him, but I'd no notion that he meant to follow us on board.
“Yes, but you are not she that spake to us on the road,” said Cissy.
And many resorted unto him, and said, John did no miracle: but all things that John spake of this man were true.
From that tyme to his forth commyng to the fire, spake no man with him.
He could not quite reach Cheyenne, who slapped at the bull with his hat and spake eloquently.
While he yet spake, two balls entered his heart, and he fell dead.
Many heard what she spake, and a murmur of joy ran through the ranks of men: for they deemed her words to forecast victory.
As He spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever!
Old English specan, variant of sprecan "to speak" (class V strong verb; past tense spræc, past participle sprecen), from Proto-Germanic *sprekanan (cf. Old Saxon sprecan, Old Frisian spreka, Middle Dutch spreken, Old High German sprehhan, German sprechen "to speak," Old Norse spraki "rumor, report"), cognate with Latin spargere "to strew" (speech as a "scattering" of words; see sparse).
The -r- began to drop out in Late West Saxon and was gone by mid-12c., perhaps from influence of Danish spage "crackle," in a slang sense of "speak" (cf. crack in slang senses having to do with speech, e.g. wisecrack, cracker, all it's cracked up to be). Rare variant forms without -r- also are found in Middle Dutch (speken) and Old High German (spehhan).
Not the primary word for "to speak" in Old English (the "Beowulf" author prefers maþelian, from mæþel "assembly, council," from root of metan "to meet;" cf. Greek agoreuo "to speak," originally "speak in the assembly," from agora "assembly").