Word Wednesday.

Reck / Reckon


Verb, Intransitive Verb.

1: Worry, Care. To have care, concern or regard. 1b: To take heed.

2: archaic: to be of account or interest: Matter.

Transitive Verb

1: archaic: to care for; regard.

2: archaic: to matter to: concern.

[Origin: Middle English, to take heed, from Old English reccan; akin to Old Norse roekja to have care, German (ge)ruhen to deign, akin to Old High German ruohhen to take heed.]

(Before 12th Century.)

Note: I grew up using reck and reckon. I still use reckon, because most people recognize it, but I had to give up reck, it’s unfortunately been lost to most people. I would say I don’t reck instead of I don’t care, and doesn’t reck rather than doesn’t matter.


Verb, Transitive Verb

1a: count <reckon the days to Christmas> b: estimate, compute. c: to determine by reference to a fixed basis.

2: to regard or think of as: consider.

3: chiefly dialectal: think, suppose.

Intransitive Verb

1: to settle accounts.

2: to make a calculation.

3a: judge b: chiefly dialectal: suppose, think.

4: to accept something as certain: place reliance.

-reckon with: to take into consideration.

-reckon without: to fail to consider: ignore.

[Origin: Middle English rekenen, from Old English –recenian (as in gerecenian to narrate); akin to Old English reccan.]

(13th Century.)

The girl had the good grace to blush. “I came in to get a Valentine’s card,” she said, “only I can’t choose. Look.” She pointed to the display near the counter. “Funny, sexy, or romantic – what d’you reckon?” – The Witch’s Daughter, by Paula Brackston.


  1. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    Huh. Wasn’t aware of reck. Thanks for that.

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