prick

[ prik ]
/ prɪk /

noun

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

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Idioms for prick

    kick against the pricks, to resist incontestable facts or authority; protest uselessly: In appealing the case again, you will just be kicking against the pricks.
    prick up one's ears, to become very alert; listen attentively: The reporter pricked up his ears at the prospect of a scoop.

Origin of prick

before 1000; (noun) Middle English prike; Old English prica, price dot, point; (v.) Middle English priken, Old English prician; cognate with Dutch, Low German prik point

OTHER WORDS FROM prick

prick·er, nounprick·ing·ly, adverbun·pricked, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for prick up one's ears

prick
/ (prɪk) /

verb (mainly tr)

noun

Word Origin for prick

Old English prica point, puncture; related to Dutch prik, Icelandic prik short stick, Swedish prick point, stick
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

Idioms and Phrases with prick up one's ears

prick up one's ears

Listen carefully, pay close attention, as in When she heard them mention her boyfriend she pricked up her ears. This term alludes to horses raising their ears at a sudden noise. [Late 1500s]

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