baulk, balk
1. pronunciation.
It should be pronounced bawlk (with l).
2. spelling.
The usual BrE spelling is baulk, although balk is more common in AmE. The primary use is as a verb meaning (1) followed by at: ‘to hesitate, refuse to go on’, as in

• For one thing, the government may baulk at giving the financial guarantee —New Scientist, 1991

(2) followed by of: ‘to thwart’, as in

• I gave her the number and hung up feeling baulked of my escape —L. R. Banks, 1987

• Fenella had the feeling that they were simply mustering their strength again; they had been baulked of their prey and they had retired —B. Wood, 1993.

There are a few technical noun meanings, including a line in billiards and snooker and a length of sawn timber; the same spelling rules apply.

Modern English usage. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • baulk — (chiefly US also balk) ► VERB 1) (baulk at) hesitate to accept (an idea). 2) thwart or hinder (a plan or person). 3) (of a horse) refuse to go on. ► NOUN ▪ a roughly squared timber beam. ORIGIN originally …   English terms dictionary

  • baulk — [bo:k, bo:lk US bo:k, bo:lk] a British spelling of ↑balk …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • baulk — [ bɔk ] another spelling of balk …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • baulk — alternative spelling of BALK (Cf. balk), especially in billiards, in reference to a bad shot …   Etymology dictionary

  • baulk — [bôk] n., vt., vi. BALK …   English World dictionary

  • baulk — /bɔk / (say bawk) verb (i) 1. to stop, as at an obstacle: he baulked at making the speech. 2. (of horses) to stop short and stubbornly refuse to go on. 3. Sport to make an incomplete or misleading move, especially an illegal one. –verb (t) 4. to… …   Australian English dictionary

  • baulk — UK [bɔːk] / US [bɔk] verb [intransitive] Word forms baulk : present tense I/you/we/they baulk he/she/it baulks present participle baulking past tense baulked past participle baulked a) to be unwilling to do something or let something happen,… …   English dictionary

  • Baulk — Bauk Bauk, Baulk Baulk, n. & v. See {Balk}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • baulk — [bɔ:lk, bɔ:k] (chiefly US also balk) verb 1》 (baulk at) hesitate to accept (an idea or undertaking). 2》 thwart or hinder (a plan or person). 3》 (of a horse) refuse to go on. noun 1》 a roughly squared timber beam. 2》 the area on a billiard table… …   English new terms dictionary

  • Baulk — This interesting topographical name is of Olde English pre 10th century origin and derives from Balca , which translates as the ridge or possibly a bridge formed with tree trunks. The name can also be locational and derive from the village of… …   Surnames reference