berserker

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n berserker one of the ancient Norse warriors legendary for working themselves into a frenzy before a battle and fighting with reckless savagery and insane fury
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Berserker (Scand. Myth) One of a class of legendary heroes, who fought frenzied by intoxicating liquors, and naked, regardless of wounds.
    • Berserker One who fights as if frenzied, like a Berserker.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n berserker A wild warrior or champion of heathen times in Scandinavia. In battle the berserkers are said to have been subject to fits of fury, when they howled like wild beasts, foamed at the mouth, gnawed the rim of their shields, etc.; and on such occasions they were popularly believed to be proof against fire and steel.
    • n berserker Hence A person of extreme violence and fury.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Berserker bėr′serkėr a Norse warrior whom the sight of the field of battle would fill with a frenzied and resistless fury—'the berserker rage.'
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Quotations

  • George Sheehan
    George Sheehan
    “If you want to win anything -- a race, your self, your life -- you have to go a little berserk.”

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Icel. berserkr,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Ice. berserkr; Vigfusson explains the word as 'bear-sark,' and most probably a reference to the uncanny Werewolf superstition is involved.

Usage

In literature:

He had gone berserk with rage.
"The Stowaway Girl" by Louis Tracy
A berserk madness of smashing and breaking had laid hold on me.
"The Door Through Space" by Marion Zimmer Bradley
That look in his eyes they knew all too well, it was the man-killing berserker rage.
"Rimrock Jones" by Dane Coolidge
I do not know whether my lady-readers have nerves to stand by while "the Berserkers" overthrow the garden-fence.
"The Home" by Fredrika Bremer
That is Hake of Hadeland, King Harald's famous berserk.
"Erling the Bold" by R.M. Ballantyne
Then my Swede would storm in Berserker rage, and we would lift till the veins throbbed in my head.
"The Trail of '98" by Robert W. Service
In Berserker madness, torrent and uproar, clashed the two colours.
"The Long Roll" by Mary Johnston
But he was no match for the berserker rage which had transformed the man from the woods.
"Joan of Arc of the North Woods" by Holman Day
Hilary went berserk, screamed strange oaths, fired again and again.
"Slaves of Mercury" by Nat Schachner
In berserker fury the tortured Xoranian charged blindly toward Gordon.
"Astounding Stories of Super-Science January 1931" by Various
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In poetry:

No Berserk thirst of blood had they,
No battle-joy was theirs, who set
Against the alien bayonet
Their homespun breasts in that old day.
"Lexington" by John Greenleaf Whittier
On the shining wall a vast
And shadowy cross was cast
From the hilt of the lifted sword,
And in foaming cups of ale
The Berserks drank "Was-hael!
To the Lord!"
"Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga of King Olaf XII. -- King Olaf's Chri" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
At Drontheim, Olaf the King
Heard the bells of Yule-tide ring,
As he sat in his banquet-hall,
Drinking the nut-brown ale,
With his bearded Berserks hale
And tall.
"Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga of King Olaf XII. -- King Olaf's Chri" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
And the Berserks round about
Broke forth into a shout
That made the rafters ring:
They smote with their fists on the board,
And shouted, "Long live the Sword,
And the King!"
"Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga of King Olaf XII. -- King Olaf's Chri" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
O'er his drinking-horn, the sign
He made of the cross divine,
As he drank, and muttered his prayers;
But the Berserks evermore
Made the sign of the Hammer of Thor
Over theirs.
"Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 1. The Musician's Tale; The Saga of King Olaf XII. -- King Olaf's Chri" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In news:

Lines were berserk throughout the fest and this show at Harro East was no different, with folks lining up at 3:30 pm for a 5:30 pm show.
Unarmed man goes berserk on Mumbai-Delhi flight.
Donald Trump goes berserk on election night.
Pastor's killer goes berserk after death sentence.
Matt Lauer going berserk behind scenes as 'Today' ratings sink.
Robert Blake goes berserk on 'Piers Morgan Tonight'.
O f the bands the British music press goes berserk about, few make much of an impression here in the United States (Kooks.
Going, Gone Berserk : Pine-Tar Bat Incident Revisited.
There was snarling, growling, even a little berserk laughter as the Battle Lords faced off.
Mate Goes Berserk After Angler Loses Fish.
Charlie Sheen was so high from snorting and smoking cocaine that he was screaming the 'N' word during his crazed rant at a New York hotel early Tuesday morning as he went berserk, RadarOnline.com is reporting exclusively.
The show's performers and creators are now part of two locally based theater groups, the Berserker Residents and Swim Pony Performing Arts.
The title implies a berserk quality, when in fact this movie is a tightly controlled and emotionally subdued piece of work.
It's an older episode of "The Office," the one where Stanley goes berserk and Pam wears her ugly glasses and Darryl tells Michael he belongs to a gang called "the Newsies".
Going, Gone Berserk: Pine-Tar Bat Incident Revisited.
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