[bask, bahsk]

verb (used without object)

to lie in or be exposed to a pleasant warmth: to bask in the sunshine.
to enjoy a pleasant situation: He basked in royal favor.

verb (used with object)

Obsolete. to expose to warmth or heat.

Origin of bask

1350–1400; Middle English < Old Norse bathask to bathe oneself, equivalent to bath- bath1 + -ask reflexive suffix Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for basked

Contemporary Examples of basked

Historical Examples of basked

  • Bill completely filled a chair, where he basked in the evening sunlight.

    The Law-Breakers

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • The loss of that favor in which, as in a sunshine, he basked, is a bereavement too great to be borne.

    Sir Jasper Carew

    Charles James Lever

  • There was not a clime he had not basked in; not an engagement he had not witnessed.

  • Meanwhile he basked in the sun of notoriety, and played his rôle of the man of principle.

    Half a Hero

    Anthony Hope

  • For years they could hardly be said to live like mortals: they basked in bliss.

    White Lies

    Charles Reade

British Dictionary definitions for basked


verb (intr usually foll by in)

to lie in or be exposed to pleasant warmth, esp that of the sun
to flourish or feel secure under some benevolent influence or favourable condition

Word Origin for bask

C14: from Old Norse bathask to bathe
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

Word Origin and History for basked



late 14c., basken "to wallow (in blood)," with loss of middle syllable, from Old Norse baðask "to bathe oneself," reflexive of baða "bathe" (see bathe). Modern meaning "soak up a flood of warmth" is apparently due to Shakespeare's use of the word in reference to sunshine in "As You Like It" (1600). Related: Basked; basking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper