Definition of yoke in English:



  • 1A wooden crosspiece that is fastened over the necks of two animals and attached to the plow or cart that they are to pull.

    • ‘The only noise was the snorting of oxen as they pulled against the yoke.’
    • ‘The god told him that he would meet a cow that had never borne the weight of a yoke or plough.’
    • ‘The yoke was fastened to the pole with a complex of knots so thoroughly tangled that it was impossible to unravel.’
    • ‘She saw herself bound to her routine like a bullock to its yoke.’
    harness, collar, coupling, tackle, tack, equipage
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    1. 1.1"( plural same or yokes ) " A pair of animals coupled together with a yoke.
      ‘a yoke of oxen’
    2. 1.2archaic The amount of land that one pair of oxen could plow in a day.
    3. 1.3 A frame fitting over the neck and shoulders of a person, used for carrying pails or baskets.
      • ‘Women in brightly coloured headscarves and short Russian army boots carried pails of milk on yokes around their shoulders.’
      • ‘By day he was working in a limestone quarry, carrying buckets of stones on a yoke.’
    4. 1.4 Used of something that is regarded as oppressive or burdensome.
      ‘the yoke of imperialism’
      • ‘The term is an antiquated yoke of oppression, politically, culturally and socially.’
      • ‘The worst abuses were officially abolished, but the yoke of oppression did return, and new laws depriving people of their freedom and their political rights were instituted.’
      • ‘We're free from the yoke of oppression.’
      • ‘The gang tries to throw off the yoke of racist oppression and control their own destinies.’
      • ‘If it brings about democratic progress, why is it a bad thing for people to throw off the yoke of tyranny and decide that they want to control their own futures?’
      • ‘They have been released from the yoke of authoritarian tyranny.’
      • ‘Artistic approach to the style has been undergoing modern transformation, emerging out from under the oppressive yoke of postmodernist theory.’
      • ‘These reforms were intended to free the common man to pursue business opportunities without the oppressive yoke of high interest rates or excessive rents.’
      • ‘The yearning of the poor that the Independence of the country and the shedding of the yoke of an oppressive colonial past would bring wealth or at least a little more prosperity to them, still remain an unfulfilled dream.’
      • ‘Most of us choose to live under the yoke of economic oppression.’
      • ‘Fifty three years ago India shook off the yoke of British imperialism and became independent.’
      • ‘This is a time full of lessons for those who day to day languish under the oppressive yoke of capitalism.’
      • ‘This could be the catalyst needed for the revolution of the common people of the world to unite and throw off the yoke of government oppression.’
      • ‘Let all who are under the yoke of slavery regard their masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be blasphemed.’
      • ‘The crippling yoke of oppression has been dropped on the American neck.’
      • ‘Sure, they may have chafed under the yoke of being Jimi's ‘sidemen’, but he simply never had any better.’
      • ‘Two hundred years ago, following a slave uprising, Haiti threw off the yoke of bondage to become a free black state and a haven for escaped African slaves.’
      • ‘It's a triumphant moment of humanity unwilling to bow under the yoke of oppression.’
      • ‘To those of us who have resented the yoke of parental tyranny, that doesn't sound so bad.’
      • ‘Once the yoke of bondage was removed, we reached out through a network of World Trade Centers in 91 countries and 200 cities, all part of the World Trade Centers Assn.’
      bond, tie, link
      tyranny, oppression, domination, hegemony, enslavement, slavery, servitude, subjugation, subjection, bondage, serfdom, vassalage
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    5. 1.5 Used of something that represents a bond between two parties.
      ‘the yoke of marriage’
  • 2Something resembling or likened to a yoke, in particular.

    1. 2.1 A part of a garment that fits over the shoulders and to which the main part of the garment is attached, typically in gathers or pleats.
      • ‘Foam usually isn't recommended for use on lightweight fabrics; however, it can be used in the yoke or neckline area of form-fitting garments.’
      • ‘The Pies wore white guernseys with a black yoke, with black and white striped socks, while Swan Districts wore their traditional black and white stripes.’
      • ‘The club wore green guernseys with a red yoke, which was also distinctive.’
      • ‘He doesn't own any shiny suits with Western yokes in the back.’
      • ‘Using elements as disparate as an overscale man's shirt minus collar, gathered and sheared yokes on coats, and asymmetrical accordion pleats, she created a collection as elegant as it was personal.’
      • ‘Teresa was wearing a simple gown of emerald green with a white yoke and a black bow just below her throat.’
      • ‘Experiment with this technique on shirt yokes and sleeve seams.’
      • ‘Eliminate the collar and finish the neckline edge with the yoke lining according to the pattern guidesheet.’
      • ‘It has the right yoke, waistband and pocket details.’
      • ‘Consider embroidering little trains or sailboats on overalls, or teddy bears or bunnies on the yoke of a dress.’
      • ‘It features a sueded finish, tailored collar with top button loop, a left chest pocket, and a double layer back yoke with extended shoulders.’
    2. 2.2 The crossbar at the head of a rudder, to whose ends ropes are fastened.
    3. 2.3 A bar of soft iron between the poles of an electromagnet.
    4. 2.4 (in ancient Rome) an arch of three spears under which a defeated army was made to march.
      • ‘Roman troops experienced the humiliation of having to walk like slaves under a yoke of spears after their defeat at the Caudine Forks.’
    5. 2.5North American A control lever in an aircraft.
      • ‘The more tightly you grip the yoke, the greater the tendency to make unintended inputs.’
      • ‘Zeke clutched the yoke and throttle, while Jeff calibrated the weapons arrays.’
      • ‘Kelsey fought to maintain control with the yoke that was trying to shake itself out of his hands.’
      • ‘Use rudders for heading control and only small jabs of the yoke to correct pitch and bank excursions.’
      • ‘It still had sticks, rather than control yokes, and got most of its performance out of its light weight.’
      • ‘Get the yoke back and either ride it out or add power and fly out of it.’
      • ‘The engines were run up to 2500 rpm with the yokes held hard back and both men clinging to the bucking columns.’
      • ‘Not only do many pilots find the small stick to be more comfortable and ergonomic, but the lack of a standard yoke frees up all the space in front of the pilot for an unobstructed view of the instruments.’
      • ‘Gilkie found the yoke wildly bucking as he attempted to hold on to the controls.’
      • ‘That part of the preflight where we bring the yoke all the way back just isn't happening.’
      • ‘Keep the yoke or stick full aft to minimize weight on the nosewheel.’
      • ‘We turn the control yoke just a little toward the wind and the aileron comes up a little.’
      • ‘He turned his yoke to the right to try to bring the left wing up but received no response.’
      • ‘The control yoke must be held fully rearward to maintain the stall.’
      • ‘My feet and hands moved automatically, working the strafing pedals and the control yoke.’


  • 1Put a yoke on (a pair of animals); couple or attach with or to a yoke.

    ‘a plow drawn by a camel and donkey yoked together’
    • ‘The two cannot go together, and is akin to yoking a horse and a camel together.’
    • ‘Mismatched yet yoked together, they make a striking pair.’
    • ‘Oxen are yoked to the plough, donkeys carry the harvest from field to village, and cows and sheep trample the grain on the threshing floor.’
    • ‘Because Cassius is yoked to him both in love and their deadly and momentous endeavour, he is a tragic hero too, powerless against the unbending resolve of Brutus to do what philosophy, not opportunity, dictates.’
    • ‘The drover had set about yoking the oxen.’
    harness, hitch, hitch up, couple, tether, fasten, attach, join, join up, team
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    1. 1.1 Cause (two people or things) to be joined in a close relationship.
      ‘Hong Kong's dollar has been yoked to America's’
      • ‘These two are modern day people with a modern day love that is yoked to older traditions they do not feel a part of.’
      • ‘A virtual initiation rite in postwar Italy, this is Domenico's chance to yoke himself to secure, predictable manhood.’
      • ‘Privatization is an economic tool inexorably yoked to politics.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, it is not always, or even usually, possible to yoke self-interest into such a self-enforcing mechanism to promote moral ideals.’
      • ‘Yet, in this instance, women evidently yoked custom to modernity in order to circumvent a Christian prohibition.’
      • ‘The occurrence of each forceful or aggressive behavior was then yoked to an appropriate response by the woman.’
      • ‘Their families are left reeling, forever yoked to this grotesque event.’
      • ‘The slender stories yoked together had the feel of upmarket fanzine writing.’
      • ‘His montage was designed around the yoking of disparate objects.’
      • ‘I wondered how they yoked a team of horses.’
      • ‘Treasures in those lineages need to he safeguarded against the breakdown of the old cosmologies with which they were yoked.’
      • ‘The Warsaw Pact was part of a bigger imperial arrangement for yoking the East European armies to the Soviet high command.’
      • ‘History is yoked with an amazing skill to personal lives.’
      • ‘Individual senators have little or no incentive to yoke themselves together to advance the national interest.’
      • ‘The second thing to consider is the very nature of the discipleship yoked upon God's people in Christ.’
      • ‘I think in the end my concerns of "unequal yoking" would have outweighed the free publicity such a venture generates.’
      • ‘Once agreement was obtained, two yoked control subjects were selected from the same school the dropout had attended.’
      • ‘True pastors will caution their beloved children in the gospel, not to be unequally yoked.’
      • ‘Limited government is a cornerstone of America's political institutions and is tightly yoked to the country's founding ideology.’
      • ‘Somehow, she had full multimedia elements, which she had yoked together in just a few days.’
  • 2informal Rob; mug.

    ‘two crackheads yoked this girl’


Old English geoc (noun), geocian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch juk, German Joch, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin jugum and Greek zugon, also by Latin jungere to join.