peak 1 (pēk)
1. A tapering, projecting point; a pointed extremity: the peak of a cap; the peak of a roof.
a. The pointed summit of a mountain.
b. The mountain itself.
a. The point of a beard.
b. A widow's peak.
4. The point of greatest development, value, or intensity: a novel written at the peak of the writer's career. See Synonyms at summit.
5. Physics The highest value attained by a varying quantity: a peak in current.
a. The narrow portion of a ship's hull at the bow or stern.
b. The upper aft corner of a quadrilateral fore-and-aft sail.
c. The outermost end of a gaff.
v. peaked, peak·ing, peaks
1. Nautical To raise (a gaff) above the horizontal.
2. To bring to a maximum of development, value, or intensity.
1. To be formed into a peak or peaks: Beat the egg whites until they peak.
2. To achieve a maximum of development, value, or intensity: Sales tend to peak just before the holidays.
Approaching or constituting the maximum: working at peak efficiency.
[Probably Middle English pike, peke; see PIKE5.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
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