Sulk vs skulk

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Sulk means to brood, to remain in bad-tempered silence, to be sullen. Sulk may also be used as a noun to describe the state of brooding, of remaining in bad-tempered silence, of being sullen. Related words are sulks, sulked, sulking, sulker, sulky. Sulk is a back-formation from sulky, added to the English language in 1781.

Skulk means to lurk, to linger furtively for nefarious or cowardly reasons. In British English, skulk also means to malinger, to shirk working. Skulk appears in the English language around 1200, coming from a the Norwegian skulke meaning to malinger, and the Danish word skulke meaning to spare oneself. Skulk is also the word that describes a group of foxes.


But CCF SA chief executive Phil Sutherland said there’s no time to “sulk or stew over what could have been”. (The Herald Sun)

Overwhelmed and taken aback by Aman’s exit, the Bigg Boss inmates sulk over the fact that a strong contestant has been eliminated this week. (The Times of India)

“We are not the type to sulk or allow the heads to go down.” (The Glasgow Evening Times)

Some of us use the same general stands and blinds each year, while others, are “not sure where to go” and skulk around a bit for the most promising spot.  (The Appleton Post Crescent)

‘On one tour, when I was 15, my sister and I were just obsessed with Kings of Leon, who were the support band, and would skulk around their dressing room, like, “Heyyyy,”’ she laughs, miming a coy, flirtatious wave. (The Telegraph)

“They skulk under the cover of darkness, target innocent people and cower in the shadows with masked faces.” (The Belfast Newsletter)