Albert R. Mann Library
Illustration of fish hooks

The York bend describes a mildly curved hook shank that makes a continuous and subtle transition into the bend. The flowing meld of shank and bend provides realistic imitations, especially for terrestrials (such as grasshoppers) and nymphs (such as stoneflies and damselflies).

Darrel Martin, The Fly Fisher’s Illustrated Dictionary, 2000

Then buy your Hookes the finest and the best
That may be had as such of vse to sell,
And from the greatest to the very least
Of euery sort picke out and Chuse them well,
Such as in shape and making passe the rest,
And doe for strength and soundnesse most excell:
          Then in a little Boxe of dryest wood
          From rust and canker keepe them faire and good.

John Dennys, Secrets of Angling, 1613