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Middle-English Word of the Day - September 10, 2007

Swynken (v.) - to toil, to labor.

What sholde he studie and make hymselven wood,
Upon a book in cloystre alwey to poure,
Or swynken with his handes, and laboure,
As austyn bit? how shal the world be served?
Lat austyn have his swynk to hym reserved!

- Chaucer, Geoffrey: The Canterbury tales (1387-1394)

The Middle-English Word of the Day is selected from Mayhew and Skeat's
"Concise Dictionary of Middle English."
As found on Greg Lindahl's website
http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/concise/concise.html

The example text was found at the Middle English Collection of the University of Virginia Library.
http://etext.virginia.edu/collections/languages/english/mideng.browse.html


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