beak

[beek]

noun


Origin of beak

1175–1225; Middle English bec < Old French < Latin beccus < Gaulish
Related formsbeaked [beekt, bee-kid] /bikt, ˈbi kɪd/, adjectivebeak·less, adjectivebeak·like, adjectivebeak·y, adjectiveun·der·beak, noun
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British Dictionary definitions for beak

beak

1

noun

the projecting jaws of a bird, covered with a horny sheath; bill
any beaklike mouthpart in other animals, such as turtles
slang a person's nose, esp one that is large, pointed, or hooked
any projecting part, such as the pouring lip of a bucket
architect the upper surface of a cornice, which slopes out to throw off water
chem the part of a still or retort through which vapour passes to the condenser
nautical another word for ram (def. 5)
Derived Formsbeaked (biːkt), adjectivebeakless, adjectivebeaklike, adjectivebeaky, adjective

Word Origin for beak

C13: from Old French bec, from Latin beccus, of Gaulish origin

beak

2

noun

a Brit slang word for judge, magistrate, headmaster, schoolmaster

Word Origin for beak

C19: originally thieves' jargon
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 beak
n.

mid-13c., "bird's bill," from Old French bec "beak," figuratively "mouth," also "tip or point of a nose, a lance, a ship, a shoe," from Latin beccus (cf. Italian becco, Spanish pico), said by Suetonius ("De vita Caesarum" 18) to be of Gaulish origin, perhaps from Gaulish beccus, possibly related to Celtic stem bacc- "hook." Or there may be a link in Old English becca "pickax, sharp end." Jocular sense of "human nose" is from 1854 (but also was used mid-15c. in the same sense).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper