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Webster's Dictionary 1828 - Online Edition

Webster's Dictionary 1828

Americal Dictionary of the English Language

American Dictionary
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Lurch

LURCH, noun [This is the same word radically as lurk. The primary sense is to run, start, leap or frisk about, as a man or beast that flies from one tree or other object to another to conceal himself. Hence we see the peculiar applicability of this word in seamen's language.]

In seamen's language, a sudden roll of a ship. A lee-lurch is a sudden roll to the leeward, as when a heavy sea strikes the ship on the weather side.

To leave in the lurch to leave in a difficult situation, or in embarrassment; to leave in a forlorn state or without help.

LURCH, verb intransitive

1. To roll or pass suddenly to one side, as a ship in a heavy sea.

2. To withdraw to one side, or to a private place; to lie in ambush or in secret; to lie close. [For this, lurk is now used.]

3. To shift; to play tricks.

I am fain to shuffle, to hedge and to lurch

LURCH, verb transitive

1. To defeat; to disappoint, that is, to evade; as, to lurch the expectation. [Little used.]

2. To steal; to filch; to pilfer. [Little used.]

LURCH, verb transitive [Latin lurco, a glutton.] To swallow or eat greedily; to devour. [Not used.]