From Middle English swink, from Old English swinc (“toil, work, effort; hardship; the produce of labour").
(third-person singular simple present swinks, present participle swinking, simple past swank, swonk, swinkt, or swinked, past participle swunk, swunken, swonken, swinkt, or swinked)
- (archaic, intransitive) to labour, to work hard
- (archaic) To cause to toil or drudge; to tire or exhaust with labor.
From Middle English swinken, from Old English swincan (“to labour, work at, strive, struggle; be in trouble; languish"), from Proto-Germanic *swinkanÄ… (“to swing, bend"), from Proto-Indo-European *sweng-, *swenk- (“to bend, swing, swivel"). Cognate with Old Norse svinka (“to work"). Related to swing.