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wrack

[ rak ]
/ ræk /
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See synonyms for: wrack / wracked on Thesaurus.com

noun

wreck or wreckage.
damage or destruction: wrack and ruin.
a trace of something destroyed: leaving not a wrack behind.
seaweed or other vegetation cast on the shore.

verb (used with object)

to wreck: He wracked his car up on the river road.

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Origin of wrack

First recorded before 900; Middle English wrak (noun), Old English wræc “vengeance, misery,” akin to wracu “vengeance, misery,” wrecan “to drive out, punish”; see wreak

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH wrack

rack, wrack

Words nearby wrack

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for wrack

British Dictionary definitions for wrack (1 of 2)

wrack1

rack

/ (ræk) /

noun

collapse or destruction (esp in the phrase wrack and ruin)
something destroyed or a remnant of such

verb

a variant spelling of rack 1

Word Origin for wrack

Old English wræc persecution, misery; related to Gothic wraka, Old Norse rāk. Compare wreck, wretch

usage for wrack

The use of the spelling wrack rather than rack in sentences such as she was wracked by grief or the country was wracked by civil war is very common but is thought by many people to be incorrect

British Dictionary definitions for wrack (2 of 2)

wrack2
/ (ræk) /

noun

seaweed or other marine vegetation that is floating in the sea or has been cast ashore
any of various seaweeds of the genus Fucus, such as F. serratus (serrated wrack)
literary, or dialect
  1. a wreck or piece of wreckage
  2. a remnant or fragment of something destroyed

Word Origin for wrack

C14 (in the sense: a wrecked ship, wreckage, hence later applied to marine vegetation washed ashore): perhaps from Middle Dutch wrak wreckage; the term corresponds to Old English wræc wrack 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

Idioms and Phrases with wrack

wrack

see under rack.

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