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yoke

adjective Past participle used as an adjective.; other word formation type Semantic change and polysemy with yoke which means a wooden crosspiece that is worn by a strong animal, normally an ox, to carry materials or move a plow normally in farming. The original yoke was a noun which has undergone a zero derivation to a past participle acting as an adjective.
Used to describe someone who is very strong. Can be used when describing how muscular or strong someone looks. Compared to original meaning of yoke, semantic change occurred to mean a human is strong instead of implying that the animal that carries the yoke is strong. Generally referred to someone who is working out in the gym, lifting weights and increasing muscle mass as compared to an animal that has to lift heavy objects using the wooden crosspiece.
 
"Man, that guys is yoked!"
Etymology : From the Old English geoc meaning yoke or earlier in the language meaning pair of draft animals. A figurative sense of a heavy burden and oppression existed Old English. From Proto-Germanic *yukam which was constructed from Old Saxon juk and Old Norse ok, among others. From the PIE *jugom which was thought to mean joining.
Source : Friend, 2012
Last modified: 26 November 2013


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