snook

2
[snoo k, snook]
Idioms
  1. cock a/one's snook, to thumb the nose: a painter who cocks a snook at traditional techniques.Also cock a snoot.

Origin of snook

2
First recorded in 1875–80; origin uncertain
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for cock a snook

snook

1
noun plural snook or snooks
  1. any of several large game fishes of the genus Centropomus, esp C. undecimalis of tropical American marine and fresh waters: family Centropomidae (robalos)
  2. Australian the sea pike Australuzza novaehollandiae

Word Origin for snook

C17: from Dutch snoek pike

snook

2
noun
  1. cock a snook British
    1. to make a rude gesture by putting one thumb to the nose with the fingers of the hand outstretched
    2. to show contempt by being insulting or offensive

Word Origin for snook

C19: of obscure origin
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 cock a snook

snook

n.

"derisive gesture," 1791, of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with cock a snook

cock a snook

Thumb one's nose, as in As soon as the teacher turned her back, the boys cocked a snook at her. This expression was first recorded in 1791 and the precise source of snook, here used in the sense of “a derisive gesture,” has been lost. It is more widely used in Britain but is not unknown in America.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.