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one of the marks composing a hallmark, consisting of the head of a leopard, formerly a crowned head.
[mahrk] /mɑrk/
one of the four Evangelists: traditionally believed to be the author of the second Gospel.
the second Gospel:
to read aloud from Mark.
King, Arthurian Romance. ruler of Cornwall, husband of Iseult and uncle of Sir Tristram.
Saint, .
a male given name, form of .
a visible impression, stain, etc, on a surface, such as a spot or scratch
a sign, symbol, or other indication that distinguishes something: an owner’s mark
a cross or other symbol made instead of a signature
a written or printed sign or symbol, as for punctuation: a question mark
a letter, number, or percentage used to grade academic work
a thing that indicates position or directs; marker
a desired or recognized standard: he is not up to the mark
an indication of some quality, feature, or prowess: he has the mark of an athlete
quality or importance; note: a person of little mark
a target or goal
impression or influence: he left his mark on German literature
one of the temperature settings on a gas oven: gas mark 5
(often capital) (in trade names)

(slang) a suitable victim, esp for swindling
(nautical) one of the intervals distinctively marked on a sounding lead Compare deep (sense 21)
(bowls) another name for the jack1 (sense 7)
(rugby Union) an action in which a player standing inside his own 22m line catches a forward kick by an opponent and shouts “mark”, entitling himself to a free kick
(Australian rules football) a catch of the ball from a kick of at least 10 yards, after which a free kick is taken
(boxing) the mark, the middle of the stomach at or above the line made by the boxer’s trunks
(in medieval England and Germany) a piece of land held in common by the free men of a community
an obsolete word for frontier
(statistics) See class mark
make one’s mark, to succeed or achieve recognition
on your mark, on your marks, a command given to runners in a race to prepare themselves at the starting line
to make or receive (a visible impression, trace, or stain) on (a surface)
(transitive) to characterize or distinguish: his face was marked by anger
often foll by off or out. to set boundaries or limits (on): to mark out an area for negotiation
(transitive) to select, designate, or doom by or as if by a mark: to mark someone as a criminal
(transitive) to put identifying or designating labels, stamps, etc, on, esp to indicate price: to mark the book at one pound
(transitive) to pay heed or attention to: mark my words
to observe; notice
to grade or evaluate (scholastic work): she marks fairly
(Brit, sport) to stay close to (an opponent) to hamper his or her play
to keep (score) in some games
mark time

(rugby Union) the shout given by a player when calling for a mark
See Deutschmark, markka, Reichsmark, Ostmark
a former monetary unit and coin in England and Scotland worth two thirds of a pound sterling
a silver coin of Germany until 1924
noun (New Testament)
one of the four Evangelists. Feast day: April 25
the second Gospel, traditionally ascribed to him

“trace, impression,” Old English mearc (West Saxon), merc (Mercian) “boundary, sign, limit, mark,” from Proto-Germanic *marko (cf. Old Norse merki “boundary, sign,” mörk “forest,” which often marked a frontier; Old Frisian merke, Gothic marka “boundary, frontier,” Dutch merk “mark, brand,” German Mark “boundary, boundary land”), from PIE *merg- “edge, boundary, border” (cf. Latin margo “margin;” Avestan mareza- “border,” Old Irish mruig, Irish bruig “borderland,” Welsh bro “district”).

The primary sense is probably “boundary,” which had evolved by Old English through “sign of a boundary,” through “sign in general,” then to “impression or trace forming a sign.” Meaning “any visible trace or impression” first recorded c.1200. Sense of “line drawn to indicate starting point of a race” (e.g. on your marks …) first attested 1887. The Middle English sense of “target” (c.1200) is the notion in marksman and slang sense “victim of a swindle” (1883). The notion of “sign, token” is behind the meaning “numerical award given by a teacher” (1829). Influenced by Scandinavian cognates.

“unit of money or weight,” late Old English marc, a unit of weight (chiefly for gold or silver) equal to about eight ounces, probably from Old Norse mörk “unit of weight,” cognate with German Mark, probably ultimately a derivative of mark (n.1), perhaps in sense of “imprinted weight or coin.” Used from 18c. in reference to various continental coinages, especially. the silver coin of Germany first issued 1875.

“to put a mark on,” Old English mearcian (West Saxon), merciga (Anglian) “to trace out boundaries,” from Proto-Germanic *markojanan (cf. Old Norse merkja, Old Saxon markon, Old Frisian merkia, Old High German marchon, German merken “to mark, note,” Middle Dutch and Dutch merken), from the root of mark (n.1).

Influenced by Scandinavian cognates. Meaning “to have a mark” is from c.1400; that of “to notice, observe” is late 14c. Meaning “to put a numerical price on an object for sale” led to verbal phrase mark down (1859). Mark time (1833) is from military drill. Related: Marked; marking. Old French merchier “to mark, note, stamp, brand” is a Germanic loan-word.

masc. proper name, variant of Marcus (q.v.). Among the top 10 names given to boy babies born in the U.S. between 1955 and 1970.

mark (märk)

v. marked, mark·ing, marks



To inform; squeal: He swore he wouldn’t mark if they caught him (1970s+ Teenagers)

Related Terms

easy mark, hash mark, toe the mark, up to scratch

the evangelist; “John whose surname was Mark” (Acts 12:12, 25). Mark (Marcus, Col. 4:10, etc.) was his Roman name, which gradually came to supersede his Jewish name John. He is called John in Acts 13:5, 13, and Mark in 15:39, 2 Tim. 4:11, etc. He was the son of Mary, a woman apparently of some means and influence, and was probably born in Jerusalem, where his mother resided (Acts 12:12). Of his father we know nothing. He was cousin of Barnabas (Col. 4:10). It was in his mother’s house that Peter found “many gathered together praying” when he was released from prison; and it is probable that it was here that he was converted by Peter, who calls him his “son” (1 Pet. 5:13). It is probable that the “young man” spoken of in Mark 14:51, 52 was Mark himself. He is first mentioned in Acts 12:25. He went with Paul and Barnabas on their first journey (about A.D. 47) as their “minister,” but from some cause turned back when they reached Perga in Pamphylia (Acts 12:25; 13:13). Three years afterwards a “sharp contention” arose between Paul and Barnabas (15:36-40), because Paul would not take Mark with him. He, however, was evidently at length reconciled to the apostle, for he was with him in his first imprisonment at Rome (Col. 4:10; Philemon 1:24). At a later period he was with Peter in Babylon (1 Pet. 5:13), then, and for some centuries afterwards, one of the chief seats of Jewish learning; and he was with Timothy in Ephesus when Paul wrote him during his second imprisonment (2 Tim. 4:11). He then disappears from view.


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