Word of the Day Archive
Saturday October 31, 2009
, transitive verb:
1. To gain or supplement with great effort or difficulty -- used with 'out'.
2. To increase or make last by being economical -- used with 'out'.
When the PRI unites around a candidate and the two opposition parties divide the rest of the vote, the ruling party can usually eke out a victory.
-- Mary Beth Sheridan, "PRI Wins Mexico State Governor's Race, but Loses Smaller Stronghold", Los Angeles Times, July 6, 1999
Inevitably, the prodigious footnotes get in the way of what is, basically, a simple parable. Like the wide margins the publishers use to eke out a skimpy text, they make the novel seem bigger than it is.
-- James MacBride, "What Did Myra Want?", New York Times, February 18, 1968
Although life was hard it was not unendurable, and the rugged and resourceful villagers eked out a living on the thin crust of the soil.
-- Suheil Bushrui and Joe Jenkins, "Kahlil Gibran: Man and Poet"
Eke is from Old English ecan, "to increase."