poke

A poke is a jab or a sharp push, usually with something thin or pointed, like a finger, a stick, or even an elbow.

The main idea behind a poke is a prodding action that creates a depression or hole, as when you poke someone in the ribs with your finger. It can also mean a quick, sharp movement, like when a turtle pokes its head out of its shell. Still, the word often has a less-than-pleasant feeling to it, like something not really dangerous but still annoying. We often say a tolerable experience is "better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick." It can also take on a more figurative meaning — when you "poke your nose into someone else's business," it means that you are intruding in another's private matters.

PRIMARY MEANINGS OF: poke

1
vn
hit hard with the hand, fist, or some heavy instrument
a sharp hand gesture (resembling a blow)
2
v
search or inquire in a meddlesome way
3
n
tall coarse perennial American herb having small white flowers followed by blackish-red berries on long drooping racemes; young fleshy stems are edible; berries and root are poisonous
4
n
someone who takes more time than necessary; someone who lags behind
5
n
a bag made of paper or plastic for holding customer's purchases
FULL DEFINITIONS OF: poke
1

v hit hard with the hand, fist, or some heavy instrument

Synonyms:
pound, thump
Type of:
hit
deal a blow to, either with the hand or with an instrument

v poke or thrust abruptly

Synonyms:
dig, jab, prod, stab
Type of:
thrust
push forcefully

v stir by poking

poke the embers in the fireplace”
Type of:
agitate, commove, disturb, raise up, shake up, stir up, vex
change the arrangement or position of

v make a hole by poking

Type of:
pierce
make a hole into

n a sharp hand gesture (resembling a blow)

Synonyms:
jab, jabbing, poking, thrust, thrusting
Type of:
gesture
motion of hands or body to emphasize or help to express a thought or feeling

n (boxing) a blow with the fist

Synonyms:
biff, clout, lick, punch, slug
Types:
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counter, counterpunch, parry
a return punch (especially by a boxer)
KO punch, Sunday punch, haymaker, knockout punch
a hard punch that renders the opponent unable to continue boxing
hook
a short swinging punch delivered from the side with the elbow bent
jab
a quick short straight punch
rabbit punch
a short chopping blow to the back of the neck
sucker punch
an unexpected punch
roundhouse
a hook delivered with an exaggerated swing
Type of:
blow
a powerful stroke with the fist or a weapon
2

v search or inquire in a meddlesome way

Synonyms:
horn in, intrude, nose, pry
Type of:
look, search
search or seek
3

n tall coarse perennial American herb having small white flowers followed by blackish-red berries on long drooping racemes; young fleshy stems are edible; berries and root are poisonous

Synonyms:
Phytolacca americana, garget, pigeon berry, scoke
Type of:
pokeweed
perennial of the genus Phytolacca
4

n someone who takes more time than necessary; someone who lags behind

Synonyms:
dawdler, drone, laggard, lagger, trailer
Types:
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lingerer, loiterer
someone who lingers aimlessly in or about a place
plodder, slowcoach, slowpoke, stick-in-the-mud
someone who moves slowly
potterer, putterer
a person who putters about
straggler, strayer
someone who strays or falls behind
Type of:
bum, do-nothing, idler, layabout, loafer
person who does no work
5

n a bag made of paper or plastic for holding customer's purchases

Synonyms:
carrier bag, paper bag, sack
Types:
doggie bag, doggy bag
a bag for food that a customer did not eat at a restaurant; the transparent pretense is that the food is taken home to feed the customer's dog
grocery bag
a sack for holding customer's groceries
Type of:
bag
a flexible container with a single opening
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