General English

  • noun the act of hitting something with your foot
  • noun a feeling of excitement
  • verb to hit something with your foot


  • In brick, a shallow depression, fray, or panel.
  • The raised fillet of a brick mold that forms the frog.
  • The pitch variation between patent glazing and the surrounding roof.


  • verb (of the ball) to rise steeply and unexpectedly high off the pitch; steeple
    Citation ‘It was soon evident from the way the ball kicked and hung that runs would be difficult to get’ (Headlam 1903)
    Citation ‘Three balls later Yallop had gone, beautifully caught at short square leg from a nasty, kicking delivery’ (Brearley 1982)


  • A sudden movement or jolt, such as might occur during contact bounce.


  • noun a sudden sensation of excitement, a thrill. This Americanism spread to the rest of the English-speaking world in the 1940s, helped by Cole Porter’s song, ‘I get a kick out of you’. The plural form kicks was a vogue term of the early 1960s.
  • noun a particular activity or period of involvement. In the language of hipsters, beatniks, etc.
  • verb to give up (a habit). A piece of drug addicts’ jargon which entered general currency in the 1950s.


  • noun a blow with the foot, e.g. in martial arts
  • noun a thrashing movement with the leg when swimming
  • verb to strike a ball with the foot
  • verb to strike something or somebody with the foot, e.g. in martial arts
  • verb to make a thrashing movement with the legs, e.g. when fighting or swimming

Origin & History of “kick”

Kick is one of the mystery words of English. It first appears towards the end of the 14th century, but no one knows where it came from, and it has no relatives in the other Indo-European languages. It may have been a Scandinavian borrowing.