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Using “Ilk” to Mean “Type” or “Kind”

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Masha in Vergennes, Vermont, says her family uses the word ilk to refer to a variety or type, as in, “What ilk of tree is that?” Is this term is now archaic? This is part of a complete episode.

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  • My family used “ilk” as the caller did, so I was so surprised to hear your response!  “Ilk” meant kind or type, as in “What ilk of tree is that?” Also the phrase “of some ilk” was used to describe something the specifics of which were unknown. From the midwest originally, my family was very well read and educated which is likely where they picked it up.

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