Main definitions of sack in English

: sack1sack2sack3

sack1

noun

  • 1A large bag made of a strong material such as hessian, thick paper, or plastic, used for storing and carrying goods.

    • ‘Here he was, improvising a remedy with fencing wire, here he was bent double under bulging hessian sacks.’
    • ‘All potatoes prefer the dark; therefore, storage in a cool place, in a burlap sack or paper bag, is best.’
    • ‘Children as young as five keep a fiercely protective grip on their younger siblings while loading one, sometimes two, plastic sacks onto their backs.’
    • ‘Women folded their worn-out linens and few spare clothes, packing them into cloth sacks to be carried.’
    • ‘Large, sealable plastic containers are good for storing sacks of fertilizer or lawn herbicide.’
    • ‘They will have to put their rubbish in plastic sacks for the next six to eight weeks while the Council waits for supplies because of the high demand from local authorities across Britain.’
    • ‘In one storeroom, one-tonne sacks of rice were stored on an uneven surface and the property was filled with dangerous electrical wiring.’
    • ‘There are no uniforms and the children do not carry huge sacks full of books on their backs.’
    • ‘Between them they had done the same with Carl's gear which had been bagged up in black plastic refuse sacks.’
    • ‘Each one, after scrutiny, found something of value to add to his sack: paper, plastic bags, bits of cardboard.’
    • ‘In the past they rarely consigned their refuse to plastic bags, leaving it out in an odd assortment of paper sacks and cardboard boxes.’
    • ‘Then I start clearing out closets, bookshelves, drawers, putting things in plastic sacks to take to the charity shop.’
    • ‘His current wardrobe is contained in a large paper sack and a duffel bag, both of which lie on the floor in his hotel room.’
    • ‘Mr Brown said clear instructions had been issued with each black recycling box saying what it was to be used for and what should be put into the paper sacks delivered with the box.’
    • ‘We had our bikes, our waterproofs and our special thick plastic newspaper sacks to keep the newsprint nice and dry.’
    • ‘They have no timber, only tents made from women's skirts and scarves, sacks, plastic bags and prayer mats.’
    • ‘The changes will mean residents placing their rubbish in a suitable container or into strong plastic sacks.’
    • ‘Garden rubbish is also collected in hessian sacks for a small charge.’
    • ‘I went tobogganing with my sister and her friend, using those big industrial plastic sacks as sledges.’
    • ‘I'd ordered 100 recycled black plastic rubbish sacks, and we'd just used the last one.’
    bag, pack, pouch, pocket
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The contents of a sack or the amount it can contain.
      ‘a sack of flour’
      • ‘Four ‘gangsters’ armed with hammers smashed a postal van and stole a sack of expensive deliveries.’
      • ‘Today, a people that prided itself on rugged self-sufficiency during the war depend on the steady flow of trucks carrying sacks of grain donated by the World Food Programme.’
      • ‘Estimates of his own financial losses varied, but the three-crew vessel often carried just a few sacks of coal to remote locations on a daily basis.’
      • ‘The bones inside their legs felt like a sack of broken glass.’
      • ‘We took a sack of rice, vegetables and biscuits.’
      • ‘The American would have to spend time calming shareholder groups, and the best way to do so would be to back the manager with a sack of new cash.’
      • ‘Presumably we won't be able to use both bins for non-green waste, so it will be back to black plastic sacks being put out fortnightly with the bin.’
      • ‘Each day of the players' holiday week, Maloney threw on his training gear, picked up a sack of footballs and made his way up to Barrowfield.’
      • ‘I feel like a sack of cement, and somehow I have to write a column.’
      • ‘According to an ancient tale, there was once a Muslim shepherd named Buta Malik who was given a sack of coal by a sadhu.’
      • ‘The story goes that when Parton was born, her parents were so poor they gave the doctor a sack of corn for delivering her.’
      • ‘Two men carried sacks of chicken feed down a steep dirt track where the land dropped off just past the road.’
      • ‘David Wickers opens up a sack of exotic adventures.’
      • ‘How fast could I get there carrying a plastic grocery sack of food in one hand, a dog on a leash with the other, and piggybacking a four-year-old boy?’
      • ‘As it was, carrying the very light sacks of shredded paper to the crusher was well within my capabilities, and the light exercise did me no harm at all.’
      • ‘I suppose it's hard to score with chicks when you roll up to them on a 10-speed rocking a sack of Ikea catalogues.’
      • ‘The problems: €500,000 is quite a sack of money for a property that promises more than it delivers.’
      • ‘You will soon be carrying sacks of hate mail to my flat; I know from previous experience that one criticises Tolkien at one's peril.’
      • ‘Unable to control his bike, he landed on the tarmac like a sack of spuds.’
      • ‘The harvest is often large enough to feed the entire village, and a family is entitled to a weekly ration of a sack of rice until the next harvest.’
  • 2A woman's short loose unwaisted dress, typically narrowing at the hem, popular especially in the 1950s.

    • ‘Sack dresses, shift dresses and shirt dresses are hitting the fashion scene in a big way.’
    • ‘Next seasons's big thing, the sack dress, was also seen in the show.’
    • ‘Bodies were being reconfigured dramatically, particularly female ones - the corset and chignon were abandoned for the unconstructed sack dress and bobbed hair of the femme nouvelle.’
    • ‘The collection ended on a high note with a sequence of little black sack dresses with gilded metallic trim.’
    • ‘Fans of the sack dress - and there are a surprising number - cite its elegant origins at Balenciaga in the 1950s.’
    1. 2.1historical A woman's long loose dress or gown.
    2. 2.2 A decorative piece of dress material fastened to the shoulders of a woman's gown in loose pleats and forming a long train, fashionable in the 18th century.
  • 3the sackinformal Dismissal from employment.

    ‘he got the sack for swearing’
    ‘they were given the sack’
    • ‘Mary Deanne Shears, terrorizing managing editrix of the Star, is widely considered toast now that publisher Lurch Honderich has got the sack.’
    • ‘In the end it was a relief when I got the sack, because I was banging my head against a brick wall every day.’
    • ‘A Canadian who got the sack for showing up to work drunk and toting a sawed-off shotgun wants his job back.’
    • ‘by the end of which Courtnay had been given the sack from the confectioner's and Doreen had severed their engagement.’
    • ‘I got a promotion at work, which was all I'd ever wanted, but since I could never stay later than 5.30, I got the sack.’
    • ‘I got the sack from Woolworth's for fighting with the under-manager in the stock room, and then went back to the youth employment officer.’
    • ‘He finally got the sack from Dublin Bus when he made one detour too many and was arrested in a Garda surveillance operation on the home of his supplier.’
    • ‘The majority of workers have now received the early retirement package and wage arrears with the exception of eight who were, instead, given the sack.’
    • ‘He got the sack for some accusations about what he might have done at the Waipareira Trust.’
    • ‘Rowena Henson was soon given the sack over another matter.’
    • ‘They just let things happen and then get a PR man to announce somebody's got the sack.’
    • ‘Email and Net abuse at work have become the number one reason why UK employees face the sack, according to a survey out today.’
    • ‘‘I started off cleaning toilets when I was 17 and I got the sack from that,’ he explains.’
    • ‘When the commander of the military base at which he's toiling got wind of this, the elder Banner got the sack.’
    • ‘He got the sack for trying to teach what wasn't on the syllabus and for wearing strange diving equipment instead of being a PADI role model.’
    • ‘The sheer volume of players who have left since Molyneaux got the sack has made Patterson's first month in the hot seat a difficult one.’
    • ‘Naturally, Miranda rebelled and eventually got the sack for not getting behind the leader.’
    • ‘Managers either got good jobs from Blackburn or they got the sack, there was no in between.’
    • ‘Tenants, trade unionists and MPs took part in a lobby of Tower Hamlets council, east London this week in support of a council press officer who faces the sack.’
    • ‘As a young man, he got the sack from De La Rue, the banknote manufacturer, after complaining that he didn't have enough to do.’
    dismissal, discharge, redundancy, termination of employment, one's marching orders
    View synonyms
  • 4the sackNorth American informal Bed, especially as regarded as a place for sex.

    • ‘They pick you based on looks and how quickly you'll hop in the sack with them.’
    • ‘Oh, and I bet you I am SO much better in the sack than her.’
    • ‘You're just trying to get soft-hearted Romeo here in the sack.’
    • ‘The bartender had a nice rack and gave me the distinct impression that she might have some awesome skills in the sack.’
    • ‘Even men who couldn't care less about physical appearance all worry about their performance in the sack.’
    • ‘As for your particular situation, what kind of idiot lowlife would tell another man that his wife was great in the sack?’
    • ‘I will be perfectly honest with you: He's gorgeous and great in the sack.’
    • ‘He came on to me, and before I knew what was happening, we were in the sack.’
    • ‘That doesn't mean you sit around for two years staring at each other's watches waiting for the chance to hop in the sack.’
    • ‘The beauty of talking dirty in the sack is that you communicate it's not only your body which is aroused but your senses and mind as well.’
    • ‘Virgil wasn't too rowdy in the sack, but he had potential.’
    • ‘But for all his success in the sack, he insists that what he's really looking for is a woman he can take home for keeps.’
    • ‘I was doing him a favor, really, if you think about it - him and any girl unfortunate enough to end up in the sack with him in the future.’
    • ‘While I - a sixteen-year-old girl - got to watch my dad die, my mother was jumping in the sack with someone else?’
    • ‘Not very bright, not very pretty, and probably not very good in the sack, but she had undeniable charisma.’
    • ‘She's gorgeous and great in the sack, but mostly I fantasize about the girl in the next cube, my neighbor, even my ex from high school.’
    • ‘Sure, he was hot in the sack when the two of you were together, but is it possible that the sex was spectacular then because you were emotionally invested?’
    • ‘It wasn't like she was trying to get us all in the sack.’
    • ‘Is there something wrong with me, if I don't want to hop in the sack?’
    • ‘Forgive me, but a romp in the sack does not equal love.’
  • 5Baseball
    informal A base.

    • ‘Say, for instance, the underhand toss the hurler sent toward the behind (aka catcher) went to the spot you'd indicated and you walloped a shot to the second sack man.’
    • ‘Should I be guarding closer to the third sack and the foul line?’
    • ‘If they finish the year first in pilfered sacks, it would be the first time since 1938 that the Bronx Bombers led in this category.’
    • ‘He started out as a pitcher as many ballplayers do but quickly was moved over to the first sack.’
  • 6American Football
    An act of tackling of a quarterback behind the line of scrimmage.

    • ‘Jamie Sharper led a solid defensive effort with seven tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble.’
    • ‘The Colts' offensive line has surrendered 14 sacks in the preseason.’
    • ‘Last year, Babin recorded 15 sacks and 33 tackles behind the line of scrimmage.’
    • ‘He had a solid season with the Jets, recording a career-best six sacks and 58 tackles.’
    • ‘Joseph has racked up 16 sacks and 34 quarterback hurries since moving to tackle.’
    • ‘The defensive line is a strength, but the team would like more quarterback sacks from the left side.’
    • ‘Michael Bankston, who led the team in sacks and the line in tackles, will rotate with Booker and be the top sub at all four line positions.’
    • ‘In 2002, when the defense was the strength of the team, the line made 9.5 sacks.’
    • ‘With three sacks and 10 tackles for loss, Doss can disrupt the opponent's backfield.’
    • ‘It's been three years since Jason Taylor last dropped a zero: zero sacks, zero solo tackles and zero assists.’
    • ‘Last season, he led all NFL defensive linemen with 86 tackles and had 10 sacks.’
    • ‘Even though Orr wasn't officially credited with a sack or a tackle, he gets one in my book.’
    • ‘Instead, it was the Bucs that took control, led by Rice, who had five tackles and two sacks in the first half.’
    • ‘Hall, who had four quarterback sacks in the first preseason game, will play several roles.’
    • ‘Safety Eric Brown and linebacker Shantee Orr converged on the Jaguar quarterback for a sack to force fourth down in the first quarter.’
    • ‘In 1982, the NFL finally cried uncle and recognized the quarterback sack as an individual statistic.’
    • ‘White, a seventh round pick, finished with 5 tackles, 4 sacks and two forced fumbles.’
    • ‘Posey was a menace all night, recording two sacks and three quarterback hurries.’
    • ‘He has great burst and quickness, and he punishes quarterbacks with his sacks.’
    • ‘Last year, it gave up 43 sacks, subjecting quarterbacks Patrick Ramsey and Tim Hasselbeck to a horrid battering.’

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1informal Dismiss from employment.

    ‘any official found to be involved would be sacked on the spot’
    • ‘A business acquaintance tried to sack two employees recently: the first for incompetence, the second for tardiness.’
    • ‘The catering group warned it would not reinstate sacked employees, but would look at ‘other alternatives’.’
    • ‘But his employers sacked him, saying he was guilty of gross misconduct.’
    • ‘Last June, DBC's plant closed down, work halted on the second phase of the development and all the employees were sacked.’
    • ‘Two employees have been sacked and 120 others face dismissal for joining earlier protests.’
    • ‘To deny a person employment or to sack them on such grounds is an abuse of natural justice and due process because they have already received the legally appropriate penalty.’
    • ‘What can now be said is that the youth workers' employer has sacked the woman involved after an investigation into her conduct.’
    • ‘His wife leaves him, and his employers sack him.’
    • ‘Last week six Cable and Wireless employees were sacked and two more resigned - all because they sent smutty e-mails at work.’
    • ‘How many hospitals and schools are we prepared to see go to the wall, sacking employees, getting into debt, slashing pay to save jobs?’
    • ‘Under the proposed new legislation it would be easier for employers to lay off and sack certain categories of workers.’
    • ‘The Tories would scrap rules preventing employers sacking striking workers during the first eight weeks of action, he said.’
    • ‘The men have been locked in a wrangle with their employers since they were sacked in 2000 amid allegations of bullying and harassment.’
    • ‘I am writing to express my great disappointment to learn that one of your employees has been sacked.’
    • ‘The Prime Minister has come out in support of Dr Hollingworth's decision not to sack someone from their employment despite enormous impropriety.’
    • ‘If he had done this while still in his job his employers would have sacked him.’
    • ‘But just months later his employers sacked him after he took time off sick due to anxiety and stress.’
    • ‘Geetha, another sacked female employee, also attempted suicide after she was dismissed.’
    • ‘Three Dell employees have been sacked by the company in the past seven months for taking drugs at work.’
    • ‘Now an employment tribunal has awarded her an undisclosed four-figure compensation payment and ruled that her employers acted illegally in sacking her.’
    dismiss, give someone their notice, throw out, get rid of, lay off, make redundant, let go, discharge, cashier
    View synonyms
  • 2American Football
    Tackle (a quarterback) behind the line of scrimmage.

    ‘Oregon intercepted five of his passes and sacked him five times’
    • ‘During that season, San Francisco sacked enemy quarterbacks 61 times.’
    • ‘He uses a chop that allows him to create fumbles when he's sacking the quarterback.’
    • ‘For the last two seasons, the Texans have been one of the worst defenses in the league at sacking the quarterback.’
    • ‘He already is helping to sell tickets, but it may take him a little longer to figure out how to sack the quarterback on a consistent basis.’
    • ‘Next down, he charged around the left tackle and sacked the quarterback for a safety.’
    • ‘Chuck Walsh conquered every player he went up against and was able to sack Windsor's quarterback twice.’
  • 3rare Put into a sack or sacks.

    ‘a small part of his wheat had been sacked’
    • ‘Packing sheds were constructed for growers to sort and sack the potatoes for shipment.’
    • ‘Well, prior to going out to collect the buggies, I was inside sacking groceries at the express counter.’
    • ‘Mr. Cahm Gastineau, an old time thresherman, and my friend for 60 years, took care of sacking the grain.’

Phrases

  • hit the sack

    • informal Go to bed.

      • ‘Watching them play last night was a nice way to end the day before hitting the sack with a smile.’
      • ‘Would you like a hot chocolate before hitting the sack, Harley?’
      • ‘Anyhow, I'm also cold and it's really late, so I'm going to do some reading, get through the exciting parts of The Moonstone, and hit the sack.’
      • ‘Got home around 12:30 or so, played around on the computer for a bit, then finished up Charlotte's Web before hitting the sack.’
      • ‘Anyhow, I want to do some reading before I hit the sack.’
      • ‘By the time we hit the sack, it was after two in the morning.’
      • ‘I know there was no wound on my wrist before hitting the sack because upon retiring I took off my watch and did not observe any blemish in the left wrist area.’
      • ‘Perhaps this headache had something to do with the fact that I hit the sack at 7:30 pm last night and slept for the entire night - double my usual night's sleep.’
      • ‘I work so hard all day long that when I finally get to get upstairs, I'm ready to hit the sack or just settle in and read.’
      • ‘Post-dinner, I decided to catch up with some reading before hitting the sack.’
      • ‘We went for another waltz down ‘Da Street’ before hitting the sack, only stopping for one last drink at a beachside bar where an Elvis impersonater was performing.’
      • ‘Having got that off my chest, I am going to have a shower, and hit the sack.’
      • ‘After his long 11-hour workday you'd think Lipani would hit the sack.’
      • ‘Last night we only hit the sack around 3am, and tonight could be a late one.’
      • ‘Once the two were out of hearing range, Stacy turned to Jen and asked, ‘So you hitting the sack with Michael or what?’’
      • ‘But I am sleepy right now and I will be hitting the sack.’
      • ‘Late in the evening, when I announced I was ready to hit the sack, Graham asked: ‘How are you feeling after your restful day?’’
      • ‘Well reckon I should hit the sack else I won't be able to get up tomorrow!’
      • ‘I recommend you clean your face with a scrubbing gel in the morning before going to work or at night before hitting the sack.’
      • ‘Man oh man, he kept talkin’ about some Model T Ford and all I wanted was to hit the sack.’
      go to bed, retire, go to one's room, call it a day, go to sleep
      View synonyms
  • a sack of potatoes

    • informal Used in comparisons to refer to the clumsiness, inertness, or unceremonious treatment of the person or thing in question.

      ‘he drags me in like a sack of potatoes’
      • ‘You struck Mr Ryan three vicious blows to his stomach, causing him to collapse like a sack of potatoes into the gutter.’
      • ‘That's when the bouncer picked Chad up like a sack of potatoes and a scuffle ensued.’
      • ‘I would spend hours in a delightful daydream where the school bus bully would be thrown around like a sack of potatoes with his coterie laughing their heads off nearby.’
      • ‘He ended up half-carrying, half-dragging me to his car, where he dumped me unceremoniously like a sack of potatoes.’
      • ‘It was Franklin Roosevelt, as inert as a sack of potatoes.’
      • ‘Watching me flop back and forth like a sack of potatoes, he said, ‘How about we get the stable master to give you riding lessons as well?’’
      • ‘By being dragged from cell to cell like a sack of potatoes, the prisoner realizes that he is just an object, a nobody.’
      • ‘After another hour or two of shop talk I was positively exhausted and dropped into bed like a sack of potatoes, only to wake up before 4 am, unable to sleep.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • sack out

    • Go to bed, or go to sleep.

      • ‘They turn the corner and find their teammates, sacked out in some apparently very uncomfortable positions.’
      • ‘But how can you sack out when your brain is whirling over tomorrow's three tests, cheerleading try-outs and your latest crush?’
      • ‘And a Washington Post reporter who sacked out in a Big Agnes bag on his way up Mount Kilimanjaro proclaimed that he was ‘cozy, warm, and slip-free every night.’’
      • ‘Many people think the ultimate pleasure is a vacation in Hawaii - sacking out on a waterbed, a cool breeze wafting through the window, a tall drink, every muscle in your body relaxed.’
      • ‘We were dismissed to go back to our rooms and everyone sacked out.’
      • ‘Everyone was sitting, staring at their laptops, at bridge tables or completely sacked out on couches.’
      • ‘So, let's wander until dark, then we can find a nice, comfortable alley to sack out in.’
      • ‘She'd go days on just catnaps, then sack out for as many as eighteen hours on a Sunday.’
      • ‘Took a brief nap today while Gnat was sacked out.’
      • ‘Saturday saw us up and about later than usual, with Bob Zimmerman sacked out until after 9: 00 am (he has suddenly discovered earplugs!’
      • ‘If, for example, an executive says that he values time with his family but admits that he spends every night sacked out on the sofa in front of a ball game, Loehr and his team are quick to point out the discrepancy.’
      • ‘Or sack out in a hammock for some serious snooze control.’
      • ‘We'd get the late morning and early afternoon off - time I spent sacked out on the living room sofa at the house - only to be back for an hour or so of in-class time before hitting the countryside again to see the birds go to bed.’
      • ‘But we don't have to sack out yet if you don't want to.’
      • ‘Many of these newly developed bedroom communities were nothing more than good places to sack out.’
      • ‘They told Bob that he could sack out on a bench in the laundromat.’
      • ‘The only time he seems to fully inhabit the role is when he is sacked out on the couch: THAT he does with conviction.’
      • ‘You know the rest of the story of that first night, when R.'s restlessness drove me to sack out on the couch.’
      • ‘You can almost hear the gasping snores from the open-mouthed man who is sacked out against the tree, taking a nap after lunch.’
      • ‘We were all so tired that, with very little more talk, we sacked out and fell asleep.’

Origin

Old English sacc, from Latin saccus ‘sack, sackcloth’, from Greek sakkos, of Semitic origin. Sense 1 of the verb dates from the mid 19th century.

Pronunciation

sack

/sak/

Main definitions of sack in English

: sack1sack2sack3

sack2

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • (chiefly in historical contexts) plunder and destroy (a captured town or building)

    ‘the fort was rebuilt in AD 158 and was sacked again in AD 197’
    • ‘Wang's mausoleum was sacked soon after his kingdom was toppled.’
    • ‘At one point in the chaotic revolution, a mob loyal to the deposed Prince Sihanouk sacked the governor's mansion in Kompong Cham.’
    • ‘In 1204 the Crusaders and Venetians attacked Constantinople and sacked the city.’
    • ‘Yes, Alexander invaded the old Persian empire, killed armies who opposed him and sacked towns that refused to surrender.’
    • ‘Especially the bit where Achilles has sacked the temple of Apollo and goes out onto the hilltop to raise his sword to the cheers of the army on the beach below.’
    • ‘Epsilon's contingent was no more than an advance scouting party, but it was very nearly large enough to sack a small town.’
    • ‘In 1204, the Fourth Crusade sacked the city, and destroyed many of the texts.’
    • ‘Devastating or plundering land without sacking a city was a regular tactic at the time and one that, as long as people had a secure place of retreat, was not particularly fearsome.’
    • ‘A warlord and his army has sacked several villages in a near-by valley.’
    • ‘Then, an army of warriors and men dressed in black cowls came from the direction of Plunder castle and sacked the town.’
    • ‘Commanding 36 ships and 2000 fellow buccaneers, Morgan sacked the town and left his men to the burning and looting.’
    • ‘The crowd surged through and headed for the various buildings, smashing doors and windows and systematically sacking the offices.’
    • ‘In the legend of that tale, the Mongols sacked the metropolis, put its people to the sword, and dumped the books of its libraries in the Tigris.’
    • ‘Only at the colony of Camulodunum, the first town sacked by Boudica, does the entire settlement appear to have been burnt to the ground.’
    • ‘Actually, sacking an eminent laboratory was hardly a recommended extracurricular activity for one as reserved and cultured as Noriko.’
    • ‘Savi's house and shop were sacked as the crowd moved toward the commercial capital away from the site of detention.’
    • ‘Hereford was, by contrast, vulnerable to the Welsh, who sacked the cathedral in 1055 and killed the bishop, Leofgar.’
    • ‘The culture of Mercia is almost wholly lost to us: it had no Bede to record its achievements, and its greatest monasteries were sacked by the Vikings.’
    • ‘Another Egyptian army sacked a nearby town and killed all its inhabitants, but then likewise withdrew.’
    • ‘They hid out in empty houses as Rabbani's Tajiks entered and sacked the city.’
    ravage, lay waste, devastate, ransack, strip, fleece, plunder, pillage, loot, rob, raid
    View synonyms

noun

  • The pillaging of a town or city.

    ‘the sack of Rome’
    • ‘Strabo does not, however, explicitly refer to the sack of the city of Old Pleuron.’
    • ‘The statue must have been damaged during the sack of the city by the Franks in 355 AD.’
    • ‘Angkor Thom, the capital city built after the Cham sack of 1177, is surrounded by a 300-foot wide moat.’
    • ‘Magnificent mosques were toppled; palace after palace was looted in the orgy of destruction that was the sack of Baghdad.’
    • ‘So the Fourth Crusade began with the sack and destruction of a Roman Catholic town in 1202!’
    • ‘But I imagine the news that the Roman Colosseum appears to have been constructed from loot from the sack of the Jewish temple in Jerusalem might be worth an extra chapter or two?’
    • ‘The armor is engraved with scenes of Roman days to come: Romulus and Remus, the founding of the republic, the sack of the city by Gauls.’
    • ‘The example of Alaric, to whom the sack of Rome had brought little lasting success, may have served as a warning.’
    laying waste, ransacking, plunder, plundering, sacking, looting, ravaging, pillage, pillaging, devastation, depredation, stripping, robbery, robbing, raiding
    View synonyms

Origin

Mid 16th century: from French sac, in the phrase mettre à sac ‘put to sack’, on the model of Italian fare il sacco, mettere a sacco, which perhaps originally referred to filling a sack with plunder.

Pronunciation

sack

/sak/

Main definitions of sack in English

: sack1sack2sack3

sack3

noun

mass nounhistorical
  • A dry white wine formerly imported into Britain from Spain and the Canaries.

    • ‘In the Middle Ages many Alsace wines were fortified or spiced in order to compete with the fuller bodied Mediterranean wines such as sack and malmsey.’
    • ‘The modern sherry is a descendent of Falstaff's sack, though shortly after his day it began to be made by the more complicated modern process which includes adding brandy.’
    • ‘As well as drinking a variety of waters… he drank brandy, port, claret, sack, and birch juice wine which he found to be delicious.’
    • ‘Yet after wine and mead and sack, man must have a massive snack.’
    • ‘In the 17th century, sack (like sweet sherry), claret, or orange juice were used in eating possets.’

Origin

Early 16th century: from the phrase wyne seck, from French vin sec ‘dry wine’.

Pronunciation

sack

/sak/