I. vb
to inform on, betray. From the noun nark.
to stop or to keep quiet. This cockney usage invariably occurred in the com-mand 'nark it!'.
to annoy or affront; to needle. This expression, which was particularly popu-lar in the 1950s and which is also heard in Australia, is derived ultimately from the Romany word nak, meaning nose. Nark in its modern sense is semantically related to such expressions as 'to have one's nose put out of joint', to get up one's nose, or 'poke one's nose in'. It is often heard in the form of its past participle, narked, meaning annoyed or affronted.
► 'The trouble is, many people today they won't do anything. I got a very poor opinion of my fellow creatures, a very poor opinion. So I nark them whenever I can. I like narking people.' (82-year-old Ted Bosley, quoted in the Independent, 18 May 1989)
II. n
an informer. The expression originated in the 19th century as 'copper's nark', meaning a police spy or grass, nark being an alteration of the Romany (gypsy) word nak, meaning nose.
a spoilsport, teacher's pet, nuisance or toady. This more generalised usage, deriving from the previous sense, was fairly widespread in the 1950s in working-class circles and is still heard among schoolchildren.
a policeman. In underworld, prison and tramp's jargon.

Contemporary slang . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • nark — nark1 [närk] Slang n. [< Romany nāk, a nose < Hindi nāk, nose: for IE base see NOSE] an informer; stool pigeon vt., vi. 1. to inform on (a person) 2. Brit. to make, be, or become annoyed, angry, etc. nark it [Brit. Slang] stop i …   English World dictionary

  • Nark — oder Nak (voller Herrschername Brhat Chao Naraksha Negara Champasakti, * 1774; † 1850 in Bangkok, Thailand) war als Prinzgouverneur (Chao Mueang Nakhon Champasak) der von Siam eingesetzte Herrscher des Reiches Champasak. Nark wurde zunächst bei… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • nark|y — «NAHR kee», adjective, nark|i|er, nark|i|est. British Slang. narked; irritated …   Useful english dictionary

  • nark — [ nark ] another spelling of narc …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • nark at — To fret with persistent criticism • • • Main Entry: ↑nark …   Useful english dictionary

  • nark it! — Stop it! • • • Main Entry: ↑nark * * * chiefly Brit. stop that! …   Useful english dictionary

  • nark — ark n. [from narcotics.] A law enforcement agent specializing in narcotics law violations. [slang] [PJC] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Nark — (ind. Myth.), die Unterwelt …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • nark — [na:k US na:rk] n informal especially BrE someone who is friendly with criminals and who secretly tells the police about their activities = ↑informer …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • nark — 1859, to act as a police informer (v.); 1860, police informer (n.), probably from Romany nak nose, from Hindi nak, from Skt. nakra, which probably is related to Skt. nasa nose (see NOSE (Cf. nose) (n.)). Sense and spelling tending to merge with… …   Etymology dictionary

  • nark — informal ► NOUN 1) chiefly Brit. a police informer. 2) Austral./NZ an annoying person or thing. ► VERB chiefly Brit. ▪ annoy. ORIGIN Romany n k nose …   English terms dictionary

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