wreak / wreck

wreak / wreck
   Wreak "to cause (damage)" is used almost exclusively in the phrase wreak havoc: The hurricane wreaked havoc with their plans for a vacation at the beach. It is only possible to wreak damage, destruction, etc.
   Wreck is a regular verb meaning "to damage severely, destroy": The hurricane wrecked half the beach-front cottages.

Confused words. 2014.

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  • wreak / wreck —    Wreak to cause (damage) is used almost exclusively in the phrase wreak havoc: The hurricane wreaked havoc with their plans for a vacation at the beach. It is only possible to wreak damage, destruction, etc.    Wreck is a regular verb meaning… …   Confused words

  • wreck — I. noun Etymology: Middle English wrek, from Anglo French, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse rek wreck; akin to Old English wrecan to drive Date: 12th century 1. something cast up on the land by the sea especially after a shipwreck 2. a.… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Wreak — Wreak, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Wreaked}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Wreaking}.] [OE. wrek?? to revenge, punish, drive out, AS. wrecan; akin to OFries. wreka, OS. wrekan to punish, D. wreken to avenge, G. r[ a]chen, OHG. rehhan, Icel. reka to drive, to take… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • wreak — ► VERB 1) cause (a large amount of damage or harm). 2) inflict (vengeance). USAGE The past tense of wreak is wreaked, as in rainstorms wreaked havoc yesterday , not wrought. When wrought is used in the phrase wrought havoc, it is in fact an… …   English terms dictionary

  • wreak´er — wreak «reek», transitive verb. 1. to give expression to; work off (feelings, desires, or the like): »The cruel boy wreaked his bad temper on his dog. 2. to inflict (vengeance or punishment): »Till vengeance had been wreaked for the wrongs… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Wreck — Wreck, n. [OE. wrak, AS. wr[ae]c exile, persecution, misery, from wrecan to drive out, punish; akin to D. wrak, adj., damaged, brittle, n., a wreck, wraken to reject, throw off, Icel. rek a thing drifted ashore, Sw. vrak refuse, a wreck, Dan.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • wreck — ► NOUN 1) the destruction of a ship at sea; a shipwreck. 2) a ship destroyed at sea. 3) a building, vehicle, etc. that has been destroyed or badly damaged. 4) N. Amer. a road or rail crash. 5) a person in a very bad physical or mental state. ►… …   English terms dictionary

  • Wreck — Wreck, v. t. & n. See 2d & 3d {Wreak}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • wreak — [v] force, cause bring about, carry out, create, effect, execute, exercise, force upon, inflict, unleash, vent, visit, work, wreck; concept 242 …   New thesaurus

  • wreck — [rek] n. [ME wrek < Anglo Fr wrec < ON vrek, driftwood, wreckage, akin to MDu wrak, wrack: for IE base see WREAK] 1. goods or wreckage cast ashore after a shipwreck 2. a) the disabling or destruction of a ship by a storm or other disaster;… …   English World dictionary

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