Some words are fun to say: lope is one of them. It's also fun to think about, as it means to move with a casual, striding gait. Imagine a horse cantering along with an easy lope. A pleasant image indeed.

Before 1825, the meaning of lope was in the line of a leap or springy jump. This comes from the Old Norse word hlaupa, which sounds like its English meaning, "to leap." This is similar to the Old Dutch lopen, "to run," and the Old English hlēapan, "leap," as well as the Scots loup, all related to the modern meaning: a long, striding gait with a little bounce to it.

Definitions of lope
  1. verb
    run easily
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    type of:
    move fast by using one's feet, with one foot off the ground at any given time
  2. noun
    a slow pace of running
    synonyms: jog, trot
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    a steady trot like that of a dog
    type of:
    locomotion, travel
    self-propelled movement
  3. noun
    a smooth three-beat gait; between a trot and a gallop
    synonyms: canter
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    type of:
    a horse's manner of moving
Word Family

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