- to increase; enlarge; lengthen.
- eke out,
- to make (a living) or support (existence) laboriously: They managed to eke out a living by farming a small piece of land.
- to supplement; add to; stretch: to eke out an income with odd jobs.
Origin of eke1
Examples from the Web for eking
Bats that had once lived deep in the forest were now eking out a living on mango trees and near pig farms.Bats’ Link to Ebola Finally Solved
November 12, 2014
At the end of the close match, Canada found itself in the lead, eking out a 1-0 win.#LoserKeepsBieber Means Justin’s Probably Coming to America
February 22, 2014
He was then a young man of twenty-five, eking out a living by tuition.Pioneers of Science
With the cane-bottomed one eking out a wooden one he lengthened the couch.The Royal Life Guard
Alexander Dumas (pere)
But this way of eking out the facts only seemed to him to falsify them.Pragmatism
The two had been eking out the remnants of Lois's school-money as best they might.Jane Field
Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
They had to have some way of eking out a reasonable existence.The Financier
- (tr) archaic to increase, enlarge, or lengthen
- archaic also; moreover
Word Origin and History for eking
"also" (obsolete), from Old English eac, cognate with Old Saxon, Old Dutch ok, Old Norse and Gothic auk, Old Frisian ak, Old High German ouh, German auch "also;" probably related to eke (v.).
c.1200, eken "to increase, lengthen," north England and E. Midlands variant of echen from Old English ecan, eacan, eacian "to increase," probably from eaca "an increase," from Proto-Germanic *aukan (cf. Old Norse auka, Old Frisian aka, Old High German ouhhon, Gothic aukan), from PIE *aug- "to increase" (see augment).
Now mainly in phrase to eke out (1590s). It means "to make something go further or last longer;" you can eke out your income by taking a second job, but you can't eke out your existence. Related: Eked; eking.