skulk

Definitions

  • Samba found skulking by his wife
    Samba found skulking by his wife
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v skulk move stealthily "The lonely man skulks down the main street all day"
    • v skulk avoid responsibilities and duties, e.g., by pretending to be ill
    • v skulk lie in wait, lie in ambush, behave in a sneaky and secretive manner
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Skulk A number of foxes together.
    • n Skulk One who, or that which, skulks.
    • v. i Skulk To hide, or get out of the way, in a sneaking manner; to lie close, or to move in a furtive way; to lurk. "Want skulks in holes and crevices.""Discovered and defeated of your prey,
      You skulked behind the fence, and sneaked away."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • skulk To withdraw into a corner or into a close or obscure place for concealment; lie close or hidden from shame, fear of injury or detection, or desire to injure another; shrink or sneak away from danger or work; lurk.
    • skulk To produce or bring forward clandestinely or improperly.
    • n skulk Same as skulker.
    • n skulk A number of foxes together; hence, a number of other animals or of persons together: as, a skulk of thieves.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.i Skulk skulk to sneak out of the way: to lurk
    • ns Skulk one who skulks
    • ***

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Of Scand. origin; cf. Dan. skulke, to spare or save one's self, to play the truant, Sw. skolka, to be at leisure, to shirk, Icel. skolla,. Cf. Scowl
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Scand., as in Dan. skulke, to sneak; conn. with Ice. skjöl, cover, hiding-place; also with Eng. scowl.

Usage

In literature:

On the other hand, could he skulk in his cabin and allow the Master to doubt his courage and resource?
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 158, January 14, 1920" by Various
No, sir, you can bet your soul they are skulking in that farm.
"Campaign Pictures of the War in South Africa (1899-1900)" by A. G. Hales
A wolf, skulking through the scrub at the foot of the mountain, encounters, by chance, the moose-calf.
"The Gun-Brand" by James B. Hendryx
A noise, however, disturbs him from his meal, and swinging the dead animal on his back, he begins to skulk away.
"Chambers' Edinburgh Journal" by Various
Skulking rascal, pains all over him, eh!
"Sketches From My Life" by Hobart Pasha
What, shall the people know their god-like prince Skulked in a nightly skirmish?
"The Works Of John Dryden, Vol. 7 (of 18)" by John Dryden
As I walked slowly round, the dim light of my lantern fell on two figures skulking in the shadow.
"Under the Dragon Flag" by James Allan
Caution is at an end, And timid skulking in the walks of war.
"The Iliad of Homer" by Homer
The antelope fleetly runs, and the coyote skulks away from the track, and the gray wolf howls afar off.
"Short Story Classics (American) Vol. 2" by Various
Fluttering owl and skulking coyote, too, had vanished from the face of nature.
"The Deserter" by Charles King
We saw several coyotes, or prairie wolves, skulking about, but we shot at them without success.
"The Voyage of the Rattletrap" by Hayden Carruth
Old hopes, like ghosts, went skulking by, vain charlatans, ashamed.
"The Furnace of Gold" by Philip Verrill Mighels
Tell him so from me, sir, if you know where he is skulking.
"Empire Builders" by Francis Lynde
Smuggling, and paint it with what genius one may, can be nothing save a skulking, hiding, fear-eaten trade.
"The Onlooker, Volume 1, Part 2" by Various
He arose, skulked away, got his gun and knife, mounted his mustang, and left that part of Texas.
"The Wedge of Gold" by C. C. Goodwin
Near two months we have been skulking from them.
"The Life of Nelson, Vol. I (of 2)" by A. T. (Alfred Thayer) Mahan
Who are you to dare to skulk in the quiet places, whilst the battle of life is fought by others?
"A Lost Leader" by E. Phillips Oppenheim
The Tanelkums had seen men skulking behind the rocks during our short march.
"Narrative of a Mission to Central Africa Performed in the Years 1850-51, Volume 1" by James Richardson
Pipe-fishes are timid and skulking creatures.
"A Book of Natural History" by Various
The truth is, I've been skulking.
"Parrot & Co." by Harold MacGrath
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In poetry:

Stand, who comes here? what means this knave to peep
And skulk abroad, when honest men should sleep?
Speak, what's thy name? and quickly tell me this,
Whither thou goest, and what thy business is?
"A Dialogue Betwixt An Exciseman And Death" by Anonymous British
Women of night life along the shadows,
Lean at your throats and skulking the walls,
Gaunt as a bitch worn to the bone,
Under the paint of your smiling faces:
It is much to be warm and sure of to-morrow.
"It Is Much" by Carl Sandburg
And they fired upon the cabin; 'twas as good as any fort,
But the "beauties" wouldn't give us any rest;
For they skulked and blazed away, and I didn't call it sport,
For I had to do my very "level best."
"The Pioneer" by Hanford Lennox Gordon
And you bet it raised my "grit," and I never flinched a bit,
And my nerves they got as strong as steel or brass;
And when I fired again I was sure that I had hit,
For I saw the skulking devil "claw the grass."
"The Pioneer" by Hanford Lennox Gordon
And now across the thicket side
A tatter'd, skulking youth she spied;
He beckon'd her along, and soon,
Hid safely from the prying moon,
His hand with silver, thrice she crosses—
"Tell me," said she, "my gains and losses?"
"The Fortune-Teller, a Gypsy Tale" by Mary Darby Robinson
Stout hearts, and sorely tried!
--But he, for whom they died,
Skulk'd like the wolf in Cranborne, torn and gaunt:--
Till, dragg'd and bound, he knelt
To one no prayers could melt,
Nor bond of blood, nor fear of fate, from vengeance daunt.
"The Ballad Of King Monmouth" by Francis Turner Palgrave

In news:

We're accustomed to seeing the Olsens skulking around town with their arms over their wee faces and a battalion of bodyguards preventing any errant air from being breathed in their direction.
A sometimes shirtless man has been skulking through a Vestavia Hills neighborhood in recent weeks, apparently trying to peep through windows.
Hundreds of women are skulking around the streets barely able to raise their gaze from their ill-shod feet.
As if bears, mountain lions and a "divided nation" were not enough, the "La Cañada Prowler" skulks about.
King of the dinosaurs evolved from ancestors that spent most of their evolutionary history skulking in the shadows of other giant predators.
They don't skulk in late like the rest of us.
They will lurk around the trees and bushes, not being very conspicuous as the skulk along.
They skulk in the treetops – like this one is doing – and are found only by the sound of their amazing voices.
Posses formed, spies skulked, sabers rattled, lawsuits flew, and it seemed for a while that a real shooting war was on the way.
This is what I'm thinking as I skulk into work about 20 minutes late and attempt to surreptitiously slip past my boss' door.
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