A Dictionary of the English Language
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Hack (verb active)

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 955

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 955

To Hack. v.a. [þaccan, Saxon; hacken, Dutch; hacher, Fr. from acase, an axe, Saxon.]

  1. To cut into small pieces; to chop; to cut slightly with frequent or unskilful blows.

    He put on that armour, whereof there was no one piece wanting, though hacked in some places, bewraying some fight not long since passed. Sidney.

    What a slave art thou, to hack thy sword as thou hast done, and say it was in fight! Shakespeare's Henry IV. p. i.

    Richard the second here was hack'd to death. Shak. R. III.

    I'll fight 'till from my bones my flesh be hackt. Shakesp.

    One flourishing branch of his most royal root
    Is hackt down, and his summer leaves all faded,
    By envy's hand, and murder's bloody axe.
    Shakes. Rich. II.

    Burn me, hack me, hew me into pieces. Dryden.

    But fate with butchers plac'd thy priestly stall,
    Meek modern faith to murder, hack and mawl.

    Not the hack'd helmet, nor the dusty field,
    But purple vests and flow'ry garlands please.
    Addis. Ovid.

  2. To speak unreadily, or with hesitation.

    Disarm them, and let them question; let them keep their limbs whole, and hack our English. Shakespeare.

Sources: Addison, Joseph (408) · Dryden, John (788) · Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1 (46) · Shakespeare's Macbeth (136) · Shakespeare's Merry Wives of Windsor (95) · Pope, Alexander (393) · Shakespeare's Richard II (40) · Shakespeare's Richard III (63) · Sidney, Philip (140)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Hack (verb active)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: November 3, 2012. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/hack-verb-active/.

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