Etymology
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Words related to jerk

jerky (n.)
1850, American English, from American Spanish charqui "jerked meat," from Quechua (Inca) ch'arki "dried flesh."
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jerkwater (adj.)
also jerk-water, "petty, inferior, insignificant," 1890, earlier in reference to certain railroad trains and lines (1878); in both cases the notion is of a steam locomotive crew having to take on boiler water from a trough or a creek because there was no water tank; see jerk (v.1) + water (n.1). This led to an adjectival use of jerk as "inferior, insignificant;" hence also jerkwater town (1893).
jerk off (v.)

slang, "perform male masturbation," by 1896, from jerk (v.) denoting rapid pulling motion + off (adv.). Compare come off "experience orgasm" (17c.). Farmer and Henley ("Slang and Its Analogues") also lists as synonyms jerk (one's) jelly and jerk (one's) juice. The noun jerk off or jerkoff as an emphatic form of jerk (n.2) is attested by 1968. As an adjective from 1957.

tear-jerker (n.)
1911, in reference to newspaper stories about tragic situations, on model of soda-jerker and perhaps especially beer-jerker, from tear (n.1) + jerk (v.).
tosser (n.)
term of contempt in British slang, by 1977, probably from slang toss off "act of masturbation" (1735). Agent noun from toss (v.). Compare jerk (n.).
wanker (n.)
1940s, "masturbator," British slang, from wank "to masturbate," of unknown origin. General sense of "contemptible person" is attested from 1972. Compare sense evolution of jerk (n.).
jerky (adj.)
"characterized by jerks, spasmodic," 1819, originally in medical writing with reference to the pulse, from jerk (n.1) + -y (2). Related: Jerkily; jerkiness.
knee-jerk (n.)
patellar reflex, a neurological phenomenon discovered and named in 1876; see knee (n.) + jerk (n.1) in the medical sense. The figurative use appeared soon after the phrase was coined.