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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ At the moment his shoulders simply felt bowed, as if some one had laid a yoke across them.
▪ At times the yoke of his vocation was almost unbearable, although there is no indication that he ever regretted assuming it.
▪ For centuries, every autumn horses like Duchess were harnessed to a yoke.
▪ He was wearing dark trousers and a blue serge shirt with a yoke across the front.
▪ Looping a seatbelt over the yoke or stick won't really help much in high winds or gusty conditions.
▪ Only through such an accidental, miraculous chance could anyone expect to shake off the yoke of grimly limited prospects.
▪ The next stage is removing the white and yoke.
▪ They are like a great yoke sitting on our shoulders.
▪ Furthermore, the cult which is thus yoked with such practice is supposed to be of a far different order of reality.
▪ The horses had been bridled and yoked to the car.
▪ Things that had been yoked, harnessed, held down and held back by a power that was dissolving.
▪ Though we were yoked together for decades, I feel as threatened as if he were the hacker.
▪ Thus neither side is any further forward, and each is adventitiously yoked to the vicissitudes of a complex metaphysical issue.
▪ To draw a heavy plough through wet clay soil, a pair of oxen, yoked together was used.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Yoke \Yoke\ (y[=o]k), n. [OE. yok, [yogh]oc, AS. geoc; akin to D. juk, OHG. joh, G. joch, Icel. & Sw. ok, Dan. aag, Goth. juk, Lith. jungas, Russ. igo, L. jugum, Gr. zy`gon, Skr. yuga, and to L. jungere to join, Gr. ?, Skr. yui. [root]109, 280. Cf. Join, Jougs, Joust, Jugular, Subjugate, Syzygy, Yuga, Zeugma.]

  1. A bar or frame of wood by which two oxen are joined at the heads or necks for working together.

    A yearling bullock to thy name shall smoke, Untamed, unconscious of the galling yoke.

    Note: The modern yoke for oxen is usually a piece of timber hollowed, or made curving, near each end, and laid on the necks of the oxen, being secured in place by two bows, one inclosing each neck, and fastened through the timber. In some countries the yoke consists of a flat piece of wood fastened to the foreheads of the oxen by thongs about the horns.

  2. A frame or piece resembling a yoke, as in use or shape. Specifically:

    1. A frame of wood fitted to a person's shoulders for carrying pails, etc., suspended on each side; as, a milkmaid's yoke.

    2. A frame worn on the neck of an animal, as a cow, a pig, a goose, to prevent passage through a fence.

    3. A frame or convex piece by which a bell is hung for ringing it. See Illust. of Bell.

    4. A crosspiece upon the head of a boat's rudder. To its ends lines are attached which lead forward so that the boat can be steered from amidships.

    5. (Mach.) A bent crosspiece connecting two other parts.

    6. (Arch.) A tie securing two timbers together, not used for part of a regular truss, but serving a temporary purpose, as to provide against unusual strain.

    7. (Dressmaking) A band shaped to fit the shoulders or the hips, and joined to the upper full edge of the waist or the skirt.

  3. Fig.: That which connects or binds; a chain; a link; a bond connection.

    Boweth your neck under that blissful yoke . . . Which that men clepeth spousal or wedlock.

    This yoke of marriage from us both remove.

  4. A mark of servitude; hence, servitude; slavery; bondage; service.

    Our country sinks beneath the yoke.

    My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
    --Matt. xi. 30.

  5. Two animals yoked together; a couple; a pair that work together.

    I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them.
    --Luke xiv. 19.

  6. The quantity of land plowed in a day by a yoke of oxen. [Obs.]

  7. A portion of the working day; as, to work two yokes, that is, to work both portions of the day, or morning and afternoon. [Prov. Eng.]

  8. (Chiefly Mach.) A clamp or similar piece that embraces two other parts to hold or unite them in their respective or relative positions, as a strap connecting a slide valve to the valve stem, or the soft iron block or bar permanently connecting the pole pieces of an electromagnet, as in a dynamo.

    Neck yoke, Pig yoke. See under Neck, and Pig.

    Yoke elm (Bot.), the European hornbeam ( Carpinus Betulus), a small tree with tough white wood, often used for making yokes for cattle.


Yoke \Yoke\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Yoked; p. pr. & vb. n. Yoking.]

  1. To put a yoke on; to join in or with a yoke; as, to yoke oxen, or pair of oxen.

  2. To couple; to join with another. ``Be ye not unequally yoked with unbelievers.''
    --2 Cor. vi. 14.

    Cassius, you are yoked with a lamb.

  3. To enslave; to bring into bondage; to restrain; to confine.

    Then were they yoked with garrisons.

    The words and promises that yoke The conqueror are quickly broke.


Yoke \Yoke\, v. i. To be joined or associated; to be intimately connected; to consort closely; to mate.

We 'll yoke together, like a double shadow.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English geoc "contrivance for fastening a pair of draft animals," earlier geoht "pair of draft animals" (especially oxen), from Proto-Germanic *yukam (cognates: Old Saxon juk, Old Norse ok, Danish aag, Middle Dutch joc, Dutch juk, Old High German joh, German joch, Gothic juk "yoke"), from PIE root *yeug- "to join" (see jugular). Figurative sense of "heavy burden, oppression, servitude" was in Old English.


Old English geocian "to yoke, join together," from yoke (n.). Related: Yoked; yoking.


n. 1 A bar or frame of wood by which two oxen are joined at the heads or necks for working together. 2 A pair (of animals, especially oxen). 3 A frame made to fit the neck and shoulders of a person, used for carrying a pair of buckets, etc., one at each end of the frame. 4 A frame worn on the neck of an animal, such as a cow, pig, or goose, to prevent passage through a fence. 5 (context figuratively English) A burden; something which represses or restrains a person. 6 A frame or convex piece by which a bell is hung for ringing it. 7 The part of a shirt that stretches over the shoulders, usually made out of a doubled piece of fabric. Or, a pair of fabric panels on trousers (especially jeans) or a skirt, across the back of the garment below the waistband. 8 (context bodybuilding English) Well-developed muscles of the neck and shoulders. 9 (context aviation English) The column-mounted http://en.wikipedi

  1. org/wiki/Yoke%20(aircraft) of an aircraft. 10 (context electronics English) The electromagnetic coil that deflects the electron beam in a CRT (Cathode Ray Tube). 11 (context nautical English) A fitting placed across the head of the rudder with a line attached at each end by which a boat may be steered. In modern use it is primarily found in sailing canoes and kayaks. 12 (context agriculture dated uncommon English) A cowpoke. 13 (context glassblowing English) A Y-shaped stand used to support a blowpipe or punty while reheating in the glory hole. 14 (context engineering English) A bent crosspiece connecting two other parts. 15 A tie securing two timbers together, not used for part of a regular truss, but serving a temporary purpose, as to provide against unusual strain. 16 (context dressmaking English) A band shaped to fit the shoulders or the hips, and joined to the upper full edge of the waist or the skirt. 17 The amount of land ploughed in a day by a pair of oxen. 18 A portion of the working day. 19 (context informal Ireland English) A miscellaneous object; a gadget. 20 (context slang Ireland English) Pill of a psychoactive drug. 21 (misspelling of yolk English) v

  2. 1 To link or to join. 2 To unite, to connect. 3 To enslave; to bring into bondage; to restrain; to confine.

  1. n. fabric comprising a fitted part at the top of a garment

  2. an oppresssive power; "under the yoke of a tyrant"; "they threw off the yoke of domination"

  3. two items of the same kind [syn: couple, pair, twosome, twain, brace, span, couplet, distich, duo, duet, dyad, duad]

  4. a pair of draft animals joined by a yoke; "pulled by a yoke of oxen"

  5. support consisting of a wooden frame across the shoulders that enables a person to carry buckets hanging from each end

  6. a connection (like a clamp or vise) between two things so they move together [syn: coupling]

  7. stable gear that joins two draft animals at the neck so they can work together as a team

  8. v. become joined or linked together

  9. link with or as with a yoke; "yoke the oxen together" [syn: link]

  10. put a yoke on or join with a yoke; "Yoke the draft horses together" [ant: unyoke]


A yoke is a wooden beam normally used between a pair of oxen or other animals to enable them to pull together on a load when working in pairs, as oxen usually do; some yokes are fitted to individual animals. There are several types of yoke, used in different cultures, and for different types of oxen. A pair of oxen may be called a yoke of oxen, and yoke is also a verb, as in "to yoke a pair of oxen". Other anials that may be yoked include horses, [[mules and donkeys.

Yoke (aeronautics)

The pilot uses the yoke to control the attitude of the plane, usually in both pitch and roll. Rotating the control wheel controls the ailerons and the roll axis. Fore and aft movement of the control column controls the elevator and the pitch axis. When the yoke is pulled back the nose of the aircraft rises. When the yoke is pushed forward the nose is lowered. When the yoke is turned left the plane rolls to the left and when it is turned to the right the plane rolls to the right.

Small to medium-size aircraft, usually limited to propeller driven, feature a mechanical system whereby the yoke is connected directly to the control surfaces with cables and rods. Human muscle power alone is not enough for larger and more powerful aircraft, so hydraulic systems are used, in which yoke movements control hydraulic valves and actuators. In more modern aircraft, inputs may first be sent to a fly-by-wire system, which then sends a corresponding signal to actuators attached to the control surfaces. Yokes may feature a stick shaker, which is designed to help indicate the onset of stall, or even a stick pusher, which assists in stall recovery.

Yoke (Lake District)

Yoke is a fell in the Lake District in Cumbria, England. It has a height of 706 m (2,316 ft) and is situated in the far eastern sector of the national park, 7 kilometres north east of the town of Ambleside. Yoke is the southern extremity of the long ridge that runs southwards from the fell of High Street. Yoke’s name is believed to be derived from the Old English language word geoc which is similar to the German word joch meaning mountain ridge.

Yoke (clothing)

A yoke is a shaped pattern piece which forms part of a garment, usually fitting around the neck and shoulders, or around the hips to provide support for looser parts of the garment, such as a gathered skirt or the body of a shirt. Yoke construction was first seen in the 19th century. Bodice yokes were first seen in the 1880s, whilst the yoke skirt, a skirt suspended from a fitted hip yoke, was first seen in 1898.

Yoke (disambiguation)

A yoke is a device borne across the shoulders of animals or humans, for example to harness draught animals together, or to assist humans (see carrying pole) in transporting heavy or awkward burdens.

Yoke may also refer to:

  • Yoke (aeronautics), the "wheel" that controls the ailerons and elevator on aircraft
  • Yoke (unit of measurement) used in the time of the Domesday Book for tax purposes in Kent
  • Yoke (clothing), part of the construction of a garment
  • Yoke (Lake District), a high point in Cumbria, England
  • Yoke Island, Palmer Archipelago, Antarctica
  • Yoke language, spoken by about 200 people in Papua, Indonesia
  • "Yoke", a song by Basement from their 2011 album I Wish I Could Stay Here
  • Yoke, part of a motorcycle fork
  • A connector used in a stage lighting instrument
  • Ring yoke, the frame to which magnets are attached in a field coil
  • SCUBA diving yoke, an A-clamp connector
  • A nuclear test in Operation Sandstone
  • A slang term for the drug MDMA, better known as "ecstasy"
  • Deflection yoke, a device to divert the electron beam in a Cathode ray tube
Yoke (unit of measurement)

A yoke was a unit of land measurement used in Kent in England at the time of the Domesday Book for tax purposes. It was equal to a quarter of a sulung. A sulung was the amount of land which could be ploughed by 4 ox-pairs (or approximately 2 hides), therefore a yoke was a pair of oxen, representing the amount of land that could be cultivated by an ox pair. A yoke also described the device used to harness two oxen together (see photo).

In early Saxon times nearly all the Weald of Kent, the land between the chalk ridges of the North and South Downs, was covered in ancient broadleaf forest but there are indications that much of what is now Penshurst had been cultivated clearings since Roman days. The Romans left no tangible relics although we have a record of their measurement for land in the "Yokes" of Chested, Vexour, Chafford etc. The yoke is the old Roman jugum, about 50 acres. This word has survived only in Kent. One theory is that the Jutes conquered Kent, whereas the Angles and Saxons (c 450 AD) settled over the remainder of England. In these "yokes" along the banks of the river Medway crops such as corn would have been cultivated.

A joch is a traditional unit of area in German speaking countries, especially in Austria. One joch is the area of a square 40 klafters (about 83 yards) on a side. This comes to 0.5755 hectare or about 1.422 acres. The plural is joche. Joch is also the word for a yoke in German, so this unit represents an area that could be plowed in a day by a yoke of oxen. In what is now the Czech Republic this unit was known as the jitro; in Croatia it is the jutro.

There are references to the yoke or jugum in Kentish medieval records and in the Domesday survey. The rental record of Gillingham dated 1477 reveals that the yoke was a fiscal land division for purposes of rents and services, and had its own privileges. Its size was clearly related to its fertility and position. For example, an Otford rental of c.1425 lists a full yoke on the fertile soil of the valley as 120 acres, a figure to which many of these yokes approximate, but on the poor clay soils on the Downs one yoke is 231 acres.

The stability of names of yokes was remarkable: in Otford, almost all the names recorded in 1285 survived to 1447. The fields of yokes were large enclosures, not open fields, and the land within them, although possibly cultivated co-operatively by many tenants, was usually held severally. It appears that the yoke was a compact holding and this is further suggested by early tenancies. In the 1285 Gillingham custumal, it is recorded that 73.6 percent of the tenants possessed a single yoke of land. By 15th century gavelkind tenure gave rise to an accentuated dispersal of settlement in Kent and many holdings were split and became uneconomic. Thus by the 15th century, yokes comprised one or more large fields farmed in many separate parcels. They were fiscal units with certain defined rights and privileges. Most of them still had a central farm, and they had at some time in the past been single land units.

Usage examples of "yoke".

Since they were keeping the allas secret, Yoke had to talk all around everything to avoid spilling the beans.

It had been a little over a month since Babs and Yoke had driven around San Francisco distributing allas, telling each person to split their alla into seven and to pass them on with the same instructions.

Yoke put on her new purple Santa Cruz bikini and a long chartreuse T-shirt.

Then, at fifty-five knots, Bluey hauled back on the yoke, and the airplane staggered into the air at what seemed to Cat an impossible angle of ascent.

Cat lunged for the yoke as Bluey turned his attention to the loran, punching in another set of coordinates.

Corporal List sat on the buckboard, his switch snapping the dusty, sweat-runnelled backs of the pair of oxen labouring at their yokes.

The change which was effected in the form of the Government of the Cisalpine Republic was likewise an act calculated to excite remonstrance on the part of all the powers who were not entirely subject to the yoke of France.

His rule prescribed no unnatural mortification: its yoke was easy, and its mirthful choruses, combining the gay with the severe, did but commemorate that golden age when earth enjoyed eternal spring, and when fountains of honey, milk, and wine burst forth out of its bosom at the touch of the thyrsus.

The Japanese Daimio, in advocating the isolation of his country, was hugging the very yoke which he hated.

And ye warriors hearken and hasten, and dight the weed of war, And then to acre and meadow wend ye adown no more, For this work shall be for the women to drive our neat from the mead, And to yoke the wains, and to load them as the men of war have need.

Oriental patriarchs, and a great number of bishops, are enfranchised from the Mahometan yoke.

Franz Fanon, who theorized that the Third World could only throw off the Western yoke by violence.

These animals were able to draw both with head and neck, as their yoke was fastened on the nape of the neck, and to this a collar was attached by an iron peg.

He was in command of the Austrian army when the people, growing angry at the sight of the foreigners, who had only come to put them under the Austrian yoke, rose in revolt and made them leave the town.

Their yoke creaked, they breathed heavily, and the muscles of their houghs were stretched as if they would burst.