Online Encyclopedia

LUCK

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V17, Page 105 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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LUCK, a term for good or bad fortune, the unforeseen or unrecognized causes which bring success or failure in any enter-prise, particularly used of the result of chances in games of skill or chance (see PROBABILITY). The word does not occur in English before the 16th century. It was taken from the Low Ger. luk, a shortened form of geluk, cf. Modern Ger. Gluck, happiness, good fortune. The New English Dictionary considers the word to have been introduced from the Low Countries as a gambling term. The ultimate origin is doubtful; it has been connected with the German gelingen, to succeed (cf. Druck, pressure, from dringen), or with locken, to entice. At Eden Hall in Cumberland, the seat of the Musgrave family, has been long preserved a vessel known as " the luck," supposed to be of Venetian or Byzantine make, and dating from the loth century. It is a chalice of enamelled glass, and on its safe preservation the fortunes of the Musgrave family are supposed to depend, in accordance with the rhyme: " Should this cup either break or fall, Farewell the luck of Edenhall."
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