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See more synonyms for ilk on Thesaurus.com
  1. family, class, or kind: he and all his ilk.
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  1. same.
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  1. of that ilk,
    1. (in Scotland) of the same family name or place: Ross of that ilk, i.e., Ross of Ross.
    2. of the same class or kind.
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Origin of ilk1

before 900; Middle English ilke, Old English ilca (pronoun) the same, equivalent to demonstrative i (cognate with Gothic is he, Latin is that) + a reduced form of līc like1; cf. which, such
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for ilks

Historical Examples

  • Sir William came to the manor on the next day, and then peers and courtiers of all ilks flocked thither to worship the rising sun.

    England, Picturesque and Descriptive

    Joel Cook

British Dictionary definitions for ilks


  1. a type; class; sort (esp in the phrase of that, his, her, etc, ilk)people of that ilk should not be allowed here
  2. of that ilk Scot of the place of the same name: used to indicate that the person named is proprietor or laird of the place namedMoncrieff of that ilk
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Word Origin

Old English ilca the same family, same kind; related to Gothic is he, Latin is, Old English gelīc like


Although the use of ilk in the sense of sense 1 is sometimes condemned as being the result of a misunderstanding of the original Scottish expression of that ilk, it is nevertheless well established and generally acceptable


ilka (ˈɪlkə)

  1. Scot each; every
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Word Origin

Old English ǣlc each (+ a 1)
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 ilks



Old English ilca "same" (n. and adj.), from Proto-Germanic *ij-lik, in which the first element is from the PIE demonstrative particle *i- (see yon) and the second is that in Old English -lic "form" (see like). Of similar formation are which and such. Phrase of that ilk implies coincidence of name and estate, as in Lundie of Lundie; applied usually to families, so by c.1790 it began to be used with meaning "family," then broadening to "type, sort."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper