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(1)   Any carefree episode
(2)   Any of numerous predominantly Old World birds noted for their singing
(3)   A songbird that lives mainly on the ground in open country; has streaky brown plumage
(4)   North American songbirds having a yellow breast


(5)   Play boisterously
"The children frolicked in the garden"
"The gamboling lambs in the meadows"
"The toddlers romped in the playroom"


Etymology 1

From late , from earlier , from a (cognates include Dutch , German ), of unknown origin. Some Old English and Old Norse forms suggest a compound meaning "treason-worker," but there is no preserved folk tale that ties into this theory.


  1. Any of various small, singing passerine birds of the family Alaudidae.
  2. Any of various resembling birds, usually ground-living, such as the meadowlark and titlark
  3. One who wakes early; one who is up with the larks.

Related terms

Etymology 2

Origin uncertain, either
  • from (notably northern) English dialect / (c.1300, from ), with intrusive -r- common in southern British dialect.
  • shortening of (1809), sailors' slang "play rough in the rigging of a ship" because the common European larks were proverbial for high-flying; Dutch has a similar idea in .


  1. To sport, engage in harmless pranking
  2. To frolic, engage in carefree adventure