What does Gleek mean?

Gleek is the little brother of Hocking a Loogie, as it is the act of discharging a tiny stream of saliva from one’s mouth, mostly occurring on accident while yawning.

It also refers to a character from the DC Comics universe, widely known as the Arrowverse.


What's the origin of Gleek?

The etymology of the word “Gleek” is one with a twisted story, with numerous ties to the languages surrounding English.

“Gleek” used to be a game of cards in the Middle Ages, with the name for it originating from the Middle French “glic”, while it is also related to the Old Norse “gleikr” and the Scots “glaik”, with both retaining a meaning of jesting and tricking.

The term appears in print as early as 1514, in the comedy of John Cooke, titled Greene’s Tu Quoque or The City Gallant.

Spread & Usage

How did Gleek spread?

“Gleek” remained an expression, used mostly for its meaning of tricking and jesting, up until the end of the 19th century.

However, during the 20th, its use had significantly receded, only sporadically appearing in various contexts.

It started gaining popularity again in the 1970’s, however, that was insignificant, with not even the internet bringing a renaissance to the expression.

Nevertheless, “Gleek” was first defined on Urban Dictionary in 2003, with several other entries to follow.

A video was uploaded to YouTube on May 20th, 2010, by Howcast, with the title “How to Gleek”, giving instructions on how to deliberately spew forth saliva, like a cobra.

The search popularity of the term “Gleek” rose significantly in January 2020, when the character named “Gleek” made its first appearance in the DC Comics series DC Legends of Tomorrow on January 14th, 2020.

External resources

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