verb (used without object)
to have a restless or incessant longing (often followed by after, for, or an infinitive).

1595–1605; < early Dutch dialect hankeren (cognate with Dutch hunkeren), frequentative of hangen to hang

hankerer, noun

See yearn.
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World English Dictionary
hanker (ˈhæŋkə)
vb (foll by for, after, or an infinitive)
to have a yearning (for something or to do something)
[C17: probably from Dutch dialect hankeren]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

c.1600, probably from Flem. hankeren, related to Du. hunkeren "to hanker," perhaps intens. of M.Du. hangen "to hang." The notion is of "lingering about" with longing or craving.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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