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Denotation vs. Connotation

hulking

[huhl-king] /ˈhʌl kɪŋ/
adjective
1.
heavy and clumsy; bulky.
Origin of hulking
1690-1700
1690-1700; hulk + -ing2
Synonyms
massive, cumbersome, ponderous.

hulk

[huhlk] /hʌlk/
noun
1.
the body of an old or dismantled ship.
2.
a ship specially built to serve as a storehouse, prison, etc., and not for sea service.
3.
a clumsy-looking or unwieldy ship or boat.
4.
a bulky or unwieldy person, object, or mass.
5.
the shell of a wrecked, burned-out, or abandoned vehicle, building, or the like.
verb (used without object)
6.
to loom in bulky form; appear as a large, massive bulk (often followed by up):
The bus hulked up suddenly over the crest of the hill.
7.
British Dialect. to lounge, slouch, or move in a heavy, loutish manner.
Origin
before 1000; Middle English hulke, Old English hulc; perhaps < Medieval Latin hulcus < Greek holkás trading vessel, orig., towed ship
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hulking
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He got to his feet, hulking, savage, with swaying red fists.

    Cursed George Allan England
  • I feel a hulking slacker and fraud, being home on sick leave.

    The Rough Road William John Locke
  • So sweetly, indeed, that poor Jeff felt like the hulking wolf of the old world fable, and hesitated—as that wolf did not.

  • He sat there staring up in astonishment at Fyfe, hulking over him.

  • His last glance, shot past the lowered head and hulking shoulders of his giant adversary, went to the Girl.

    The Courage of Marge O'Doone James Oliver Curwood
British Dictionary definitions for hulking

hulking

/ˈhʌlkɪŋ/
adjective
1.
big and ungainly Also hulky

hulk

/hʌlk/
noun
1.
the body of an abandoned vessel
2.
(derogatory) a large or unwieldy vessel
3.
(derogatory) a large ungainly person or thing
4.
(often pl) the frame or hull of a ship, used as a storehouse, etc, or (esp in 19th-century Britain) as a prison
verb
5.
(intransitive) (Brit, informal) to move clumsily
6.
(intransitive) often foll by up. to rise massively
Word Origin
Old English hulc, from Medieval Latin hulca, from Greek holkas barge, from helkein to tow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hulking
adj.

"big, clumsy," 1690s (through 18c. usually with fellow), from hulk (n.).

hulk

n.

Old English hulc "light, fast ship" (but in Middle English a heavy, unwieldy one), probably from Old Dutch hulke and Medieval Latin hulcus, perhaps ultimately from Greek holkas "merchant ship," literally "ship that is towed," from helkein "to pull" (from PIE root *selk- "to pull, draw"). Meaning "body of an old, worn-out ship" is first recorded 1670s. The Hulks ("Great Expectations") were old ships used as prisons. Sense of "big, clumsy person" is first recorded c.1400 (early 14c. as a surname: Stephen le Hulke).

v.

"to be clumsy, unwieldy, lazy," 1789, from hulk (n.). Related: Hulked; hulking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for hulking

hulking

adjective

Large: hulking muscles bulging (1700+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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