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Definition of balk:

  1. A deceptive gesture of the pitcher, as if to deliver the ball.
  2. A great beam, rafter, or timber; esp., the tie- beam of a house. The loft above was called the balks.
  3. A hindrance or disappointment; a check.
  4. A ridge of land left unplowed between furrows, or at the end of a field; a piece missed by the plow slipping aside.
  5. A sudden and obstinate stop; a failure.
  6. One of the beams connecting the successive supports of a trestle bridge or bateau bridge.
  7. To disappoint; to frustrate; to foil; to baffle; to hwart; as, to balk expectation.
  8. To engage in contradiction; to be in opposition.
  9. To indicate to fishermen, by shouts or signals from shore, the direction taken by the shoals of herring.
  10. To leave heaped up; to heap up in piles.
  11. To leave or make balks in.
  12. To miss intentionally; to avoid; to shun; to refuse; to let go by; to shirk.
  13. To omit, miss, or overlook by chance.
  14. To stop abruptly and stand still obstinately; to jib; to stop short; to swerve; as, the horse balks.

Synonyms:

gybe, impedimenta, oppose, chip, tab, stay, dissent, encumbrance, defy, hinderance, cheque, stand firm, change course, handicap, block, protest, stymie, impairment, hinder, chit, foil, interference, defeat, hamper, verification, raftsman, hindrance, encumber, jib, baffle, interrupt, preventive, cross, disablement, refuse, obstruct, retard, demur, resist, obstruction, check, check-out procedure, stand, disability, jibe, impede, bank check, withstand, bridle, checkmate, reject, substantiation, raftman, allow, curb, clog, confirmation, bar, prevent, incumbrance, hold out, impediment, preventative, checkout, deterrent, obstructer, tick, arrest, cut the ground from under, thwart, stump, assay, check mark, fend, counteract, stoppage, embarrass, stop, baulk, rafter, obstructor, frustrate, hitch.

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