Advertisement

peck (v.)

c. 1300, pekken, of a bird, "to strike at (something) with the beak," possibly a variant of picken (see pick (v.)), or in part from Middle Low German pekken "to peck with the beak." Related: Pecked; pecking.

peck (n.1)

"dry measure of one-quarter bushel," late 13c., pekke, of unknown origin; perhaps connected with Old French pek, picot (13c.), also of unknown origin (Barnhart says these were borrowed from English). Chiefly of oats for horses; original sense may be "allowance" rather than a fixed measure, thus perhaps from peck (v.). Originally not a precise measure and later sometimes used colloquially as "a great deal" (a peck of troubles, etc.).

peck (n.2)

"act of pecking," 1610s, from peck (v.). It is attested earlier in thieves' slang (1560s) with a sense of "food, grub," from peck (v.) in the sense of "to eat" (1540s).

Others are reading

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of peck
1
peck (v.)
hit lightly with a picking motion;
Synonyms: pick / beak
peck (v.)
eat by pecking at, like a bird;
Synonyms: pick up
peck (v.)
kiss lightly;
Synonyms: smack
peck (v.)
eat like a bird;
Synonyms: pick at / peck at
peck (v.)
bother persistently with trivial complaints;
Synonyms: nag / hen-peck
2
peck (n.)
(often followed by `of') a large number or amount or extent;
Synonyms: batch / deal / flock / good deal / great deal / hatful / heap / lot / mass / mess / mickle / mint / mountain / muckle / passel / pile / plenty / pot / quite a little / raft / sight / slew / spate / stack / tidy sum / wad
peck (n.)
a British imperial capacity measure (liquid or dry) equal to 2 gallons;
peck (n.)
a United States dry measure equal to 8 quarts or 537.605 cubic inches;
From wordnet.princeton.edu