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lurch 1 (lûrch)
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intr.v. lurched, lurch·ing, lurch·es
1.
a. To make an abrupt sudden movement: The train lurched and moved away from the platform.
b. To move with abrupt movements; move haltingly or jerkily. See Synonyms at blunder.
2. To roll or pitch suddenly or erratically: The ship lurched in the storm. The car gave a start and then lurched forward.
n.
1. A staggering or tottering movement or gait.
2. An abrupt rolling or pitching.

[Origin unknown.]

lurching·ly adv.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
lurch 2 (lûrch)
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n.
The losing position of a cribbage player who has not passed the halfway mark at the end of the game.
Idiom:
in the lurch
In a difficult or embarrassing position.

[Perhaps back-formation from Middle English lurching, a total victory at lorche, a kind of game; perhaps akin to lurken, to lurk; see LURK.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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