Recorded in several spelling forms including Reck, Recke, Reek, Wrack, Wreak, and Wreaks, this is an English surname, although there may be some French input through the French Huguenot name "Reque" from the 17th century. If English it is topographical or locational and as such describes a person who lived 'by the wreaks', or who came from the village of Wreak in the county of Leicestershire. The name refers to a powerful or sometimes twisting river, one where the water action is violent. The word in this sense is a loan from the pre 7th century Norse-Viking word "vreida", used to indicate power or wrath. The village name is first recorded in the year 1237 as Wrethek and later in 1276 as Wreyke. The surname is first recorded in the county of Yorkshire in the Poll Tax rolls of 1379, when Adam de Wrekes is so recorded. The preposition de being still in use at that time, although a throwback to the Norman Conquest of 1066 and the introduction of French as the national language, indicates that there may also have been a place called Wrekes or similar, in Yorkshire. This said, locational surnames in general were usually 'from' names. That is to say surnames given to people after they left their original homes, to move somewhere else. This could even be the next village, but the even so the fashion was to call people by the name of the place from whence they came. Examples of the surname recording include those of Mary Recke, the daughter of Peter Recke, christened at the church of St. Sepulchre, in the city of London, on November 28th 1678, and that of Leonard Wreaks, a witness at St James church, Clerkenwell, in the year 1739.

Surnames reference. 2013.


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  • reek´er — reek «reek», noun, verb. –n. 1. a strong, unpleasant smell; disagreeable fumes or odor; vapor: »We noticed the reek of cooking cabbage as we entered the hall.…the pungent reek of camels (Rudyard Kipling). 2. the condition of reeking: »in a reek… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Reek — may refer to:* Reek (compound), a volatilized chemical compound that humans or other animals perceive by the sense of olfaction * Reek (creature), a fictional creature in the Star Wars universe * Reek (Netherlands) * The Reek, a mountain west of… …   Wikipedia

  • Reek — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Los reek, son unas bestias con tres cuernos y similares a los rinocerontes, que aparecen en la película El ataque de los clones, Episodio II de la serie cinematográfica de la Guerra de las Galaxias. El reek era una… …   Wikipedia Español

  • reek — [ri:k] v [: Old English; Origin: reocan] to have a strong bad smell = ↑stink ▪ This room absolutely reeks. reek of ▪ He reeked of sweat. >reek[i] n [singular] ▪ the reek of cigarettes and beer reek of [reek of …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Reek — Reek, n. [AS. r[=e]c; akin to OFries. r[=e]k, LG. & D. rook, G. rauch, OHG. rouh, Dan. r[ o]g, Sw. r[ o]k, Icel. reykr, and to AS. re[ o]can to reek, smoke, Icel. rj[=u]ka, G. riechen to smell.] Vapor; steam; smoke; fume. [1913 Webster] As… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Reek — ist der Familienname von: Edmund Reek (1897–1971), US amerikanischer Filmproduzent und Regisseur Nikolai Reek (1890–1942), estnischer Generalleutnant und Verteidigungsminister (1927–1928; 1939–1940) Walter Reek (1878–1933), deutscher Politiker… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • reek — [ rik ] verb intransitive 1. ) to have a strong unpleasant smell: STINK: reek of: The boat reeked of fish. 2. ) LITERARY to make you think that something unpleasant is involved in a particular situation: reek of: The whole place reeked of… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Reek — Reek, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Reeked} (r[=e]kt); p. pr. & vb. n. {Reeking}.] [As. r[=e]can. See {Reek} vapor.] To emit vapor, usually that which is warm and moist; to be full of fumes; to steam; to smoke; to exhale. [1913 Webster] Few chimneys… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • reek — reek·er; reek·ing·ly; reek; …   English syllables

  • reek|y — «REE kee», adjective, reek|i|er, reek|i|est. reeking …   Useful english dictionary

  • Reek — (r[=e]k), n. A rick. [Obs.] B. Jonson. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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