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    abut (v.) — acculturation (n.)

    abut (v.)

    mid-13c., "to end at, to border on, touch at the end," from Old French aboter, abuter "join end to end, touch with an end" (13c.), and abouter "join end to end," from à "to" (see ad-) + boter, bouter "to strike, push," from a Germanic source (ultimately from PIE root *bhau- "to strike"). Compare butt (v.). Related: Abutted; abutting.ETD abut (v.).2

    abutment (n.)

    1640s, "that which borders on something else, the part abutting on or against," from abut (v.) + -ment. Originally any junction; the architectural use, "solid structure where one arch of a bridge, etc., meets another" is attested from 1793 (the notion is of the meeting-place of the arches).ETD abutment (n.).2

    abuzz (adv.)

    "filled with buzzing sound," by 1838, from a- (1) + buzz (n.).ETD abuzz (adv.).2

    abysm (n.)

    "bottomless gulf, greatest depths," c. 1300, from Old French abisme "chasm, abyss, depths of ocean, Hell" (12c., Modern French abîme), from Vulgar Latin *abyssimus (source also of Spanish and Portuguese abismo), which represents perhaps a superlative of Latin abyssus or a formation on analogy of Greek-derived words in -ismus; see abyss. It survived only as a poetic variant of abyss; as late as early 17c. it was pronounced to rhyme with time.ETD abysm (n.).2

    abysmal (adj.)

    1650s, "pertaining to an abyss," formed in English from abysm + -al (1). Perhaps only a dictionary word before 19c. The weakened sense of "extremely bad" is attested by 1904, perhaps from abysmal ignorance (suggestive of its "depth"), an expression attested from 1847. Related: Abysmally.ETD abysmal (adj.).2

    abyssal (adj.)

    1690s, "unfathomable, unsearchably deep, like an abyss," from abyss + -al (1). Since 19c. mainly "inhabiting or belonging to the depths of the ocean" (used especially of the zone of ocean water below 300 fathoms), though in 19c. abysmal was more common in oceanography.ETD abyssal (adj.).2

    abyss (n.)

    late 14c. in Latin form abyssus, "depths of the earth or sea; primordial chaos;" early 14c. as abime "depths of the earth or sea; bottomless pit, Hell" (via Old French; see abysm). Both are from Late Latin abyssus "bottomless pit," from Greek abyssos (limnē) "bottomless (pool)," from abyssos "bottomless, unfathomed," hence, generally, "enormous, unfathomable," also as a noun, he abyssos "the great depth, the underworld, the bottomless pit." This is a compound of a- "without" (see a- (3)) + byssos "bottom," a word of uncertain origin possibly related to bathos "depth" [Liddell & Scott]. Watkins suggests a connection with the root of bottom (n.); Beekes suggests it is pre-Greek.ETD abyss (n.).2

    The current form in English is a 16c. partial re-Latinization. Greek abyssos was used in Septuagint to translate Hebrew tehom "original chaos" and was used in the New Testament for "Hell." OED notes, "the word has had five variants, abime, abysm, abysmus, abyssus, abyss; of which abyss remains as the ordinary form, and abysm as archaic or poetic." In reference to a seemingly bottomless gulf from 1630s. Old English glossed Latin abyssum with deagenesse, which is related to deagol "secret, hidden; dark, obscure."ETD abyss (n.).3

    Abyssinia (n.)

    old name for Ethiopia, 1630s, from Modern Latin Abyssinia, from Arabic Habasah, the name for the region, said to be from Amharic hbsh "mixed" or Arabic habash "mixture," in reference to the different races dwelling there. In 1920s-30s popular as a slang pun for the parting salutation "I'll be seeing you." Related: Abyssinian (1620s; as a breed of domestic cat, 1876). In early use also Abyssine.ETD Abyssinia (n.).2

    ace (n.)

    c. 1300, "one at dice," from Old French as "one at dice" (12c.), from Latin as "a unit, one, a whole, unity;" also the name of a small Roman coin (originally a rectangular bronze plaque weighing one pound, it eventually was reduced by depreciation to half an ounce; in imperial times it became a round coin). The Latin word also is the source of Spanish as, Italian asso, German ass, Dutch aas, Danish es. It is perhaps originally Etruscan and related to Greek heis "one" (from PIE root *sem- (1) "one, as one"), or it might have been taken directly into Latin from the Greek word.ETD ace (n.).2

    In English, it meant the side of the die with only one mark before it meant the playing card with one pip (1530s). Because this was the lowest roll at dice, ace was used metaphorically in Middle English for "bad luck" or "something of no value;" but as the ace often is the highest playing card, the extended senses based on "excellence, good quality" arose 18c. as card-playing became popular. Ace in the hole in the figurative sense of "concealed advantage" is attested from 1904, from crooked stud-poker deals.ETD ace (n.).3

    The meaning "outstanding pilot" dates from 1917 (technically, in World War I aviators' jargon, one who has brought down 10 enemy planes, though originally in reference to 5 shot down), from French l'ace (1915), which, according to Bruce Robertson (ed.) "Air Aces of the 1914-1918 War" was used in prewar French sporting publications for "top of the deck" boxers, cyclists, etc. The sports meaning "point scored" (1819) led to sense of "unreturnable serve" (by 1889).ETD ace (n.).4


    abbreviation of air conditioning, by 1966.ETD AC.2

    ace (v.)

    "to score" in sports, 1922, originally in tennis, from ace (n.). This probably is the source of the student slang verb sense of "get high marks" (1959). Related: Aced; acing.ETD ace (v.).2

    acacia (n.)

    1540s, type of shrub or tree fund in warm climates of Africa and Australia, from Latin acacia, from Greek akakia "thorny Egyptian tree," a word of uncertain origin. Perhaps it is related to Greek akē "point, thorn" (from PIE root *ak- "be sharp, rise (out) to a point, pierce"), or perhaps it is a Hellenization of some Egyptian word. Beekes suggests it is probably a word from a pre-Greek Mediterranean language and finds "no reason for an Oriental origin." Greek kaktos also has been compared. From late 14c. in English as the name of a type of gum used as an astringent, etc. Extended 17c. to North American trees.ETD acacia (n.).2

    Academe (n.)

    "The Academy," as a place where arts and sciences were taught, 1580s, from phrase groves of Academe (translating Horace's silvas Academi), the name of the public gymnasium and gardens near Athens where Plato taught, from Greek he Akadēmeia (see academy).ETD Academe (n.).2

    Latin academia also was used in reference to Plato's doctrines. Academe in a modern, general sense of "the world of universities and scholarship" is attested in English from 1849. (academia in the sense of "academic community" is from 1956.)ETD Academe (n.).3

    academic (adj.)

    1580s, "relating to an academy," also "collegiate, scholarly," from Latin academicus "of the (classical Athenian) Academy," from Academia, name of the place where Plato taught (see academy).ETD academic (adj.).2

    It is attested by 1610s in English in the sense "belonging to the classical Academy in Athens." The meaning "theoretical, not practical, not leading to a decision" (such as university debates or classroom legal exercises) is by 1886. In the arts, "rigidly conforming to academic style," 1889. Academic freedom "liberty of a teacher to state opinions openly without fear of retribution," is attested from 1901. Related: Academical; academically; academicalism (1874); Johnson has academial.ETD academic (adj.).3

    As a noun, "student in college or university life," 1580s (Latin academicus, Greek akadēmikoi meant "Academic philosopher"). Also academian (1590s); academician (1746) mostly was confined to members of the old societies for the promotion of sciences and arts.ETD academic (adj.).4

    academy (n.)

    mid-15c., Achademie, "the classical Academy," properly the name of the public garden where Plato taught his school, from Old French (Modern French Académie) and directly from Latin Academia, from Greek Akadēmeia "The Academy; the grove of Akadēmos," a legendary Athenian of the Trojan War tales (his name, Latinized as Academus, apparently means "of a silent district"), who was original estate-holder of the site.ETD academy (n.).2

    Compare lyceum. By 1540s the word in English was being used for any school or training place for arts and sciences or higher learning. "In the 18th century it was frequently adopted by schools run by dissenters, and the name is often found attached to the public schools in Scotland and Northern Ireland" [Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1941]; hence, in the U.S., a school ranking between an elementary school and a university. "In England the word has been abused, and is now in discredit in this sense" [OED]. By 1560s it was used for "a place of training" in any sense (riding schools, army colleges).ETD academy (n.).3

    The word also was used of associations of adepts for the cultivation and promotion of some science or art, whether founded by governments, royalty, or private individuals. Hence Academy award (1939), so called for their distributor, the U.S.-based Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (founded 1927).ETD academy (n.).4

    academia (n.)

    "the academic community, the world of colleges and universities," 1956, Modern Latin, from Academe (q.v.). Related modern coinages include academize (1966); academese (1937).ETD academia (n.).2

    Acadian (n.)

    "native or inhabitant of the French colony of Acadia" in what is now the Canadian Maritimes, 1705, from Acadia, Latinized form of Acadie, French name of Nova Scotia, probably from Archadia, the name given to the region by Verrazano in 1520s, from Greek Arkadia, then emblematic in pastoral poetry of a place of rural peace (see Arcadian); the name may have been suggested to Europeans by the native Micmac (Algonquian) word akadie "fertile land." The Acadians, expelled by the English in 1755, settled in large numbers in Louisiana, and were known there as Acadians by 1803 (see Cajun, which is a corruption of Acadian).ETD Acadian (n.).2

    acajou (n.)

    "cashew," the full form of the word, from French acajou, from older Portuguese acajú from Tupi (Brazil) acajuba, name of the tree that produces the nut.ETD acajou (n.).2

    acanthocephalous (adj.)

    in zoology, "having a spiny head," 1847, from acantho- (see acanthus) + Latinized adjectival form of Greek kephalē "head" (see cephalo-) + -ous.ETD acanthocephalous (adj.).2

    acanthus (n.)

    type of tall herb or shrub native to the Mediterranean regions, 1660s, from Latin acanthus, name of the plant, from Greek akanthos, from akē "point, thorn" (from PIE root *ak- "be sharp, rise (out) to a point, pierce") + anthos "flower" (see anther). So called for its large spiny leaves. A conventionalized form of the leaf is used in Corinthian capitals. Related: Acanthaceous.ETD acanthus (n.).2

    a cappella

    1868, earlier alla capella (1824), from Italian, "in the style of Church music, in the manner of the chapel," literally "according to the chapel," from cappella "chapel" (see chapel). Originally in reference to older church music (pre-1600) which was written for unaccompanied voices; applied 20c. to unaccompanied vocal music generally. Italian a is from Latin ad "to, toward; for; according to" (see ad-); alla is a la "to the." Sometimes in the Latin form a capella.ETD a cappella.2

    Also denoting "that instruments are to play in unison with the voices, or that one part is to be played by a number instruments." ["Chambers's Encyclopaedia," 1868]ETD a cappella.3


    in full, Acapulco de Juarez, resort town in western Mexico, from Nahuatl (Aztecan) acapulco "place of the large canes," from aca(tl) "cane (plant)" + -pul "large" + -co "place." Acapulco gold as the name of a local grade of potent marijuana is attested from 1965.ETD Acapulco.2

    acatholic (adj.)

    "non-Catholic," 1809, from a- (3) + Catholic.ETD acatholic (adj.).2

    accede (v.)

    "come to or arrive at" (a state, position, office, etc.), early 15c., from Latin accedere "approach, go to, come near, enter upon," from assimilated form of ad "to" (see ad-) + cedere "go, move, withdraw" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield"). Latin ad- usually became ac- before "k" sounds. Related: Acceded; acceding.ETD accede (v.).2

    acceleration (n.)

    "act or condition of going faster," 1530s, from Latin accelerationem (nominative acceleratio) "a hastening," noun of action from past-participle stem of accelerare "to hasten, quicken," from ad "to" (see ad-) + celerare "hasten," from celer "swift," which is perhaps from PIE *keli- "speeding" (see celerity).ETD acceleration (n.).2

    accelerate (v.)

    1520s, "hasten the occurrence of;" 1590s, "make quicker" (implied in accelerating), from Latin acceleratus, past participle of accelerare "to hasten, quicken" (trans.), "make haste" (intrans.), from ad "to" (see ad-) + celerare "hasten," from celer "swift," which is perhaps from PIE *keli- "speeding" (see celerity). The intransitive sense of "go faster, become faster" in English is from 1640s. Related: Accelerated; accelerative.ETD accelerate (v.).2

    accelerant (n.)

    "that which hastens," especially combustion, 1854, from Latin accelerantem (nominative accelerans), present participle of accelerare "to hasten, quicken" (see accelerate). As an adjective from 1890.ETD accelerant (n.).2

    accelerator (n.)

    1610s, "a hastener," from Latin accelerator, agent noun from accelerare "to hasten; make haste" (see accelerate). Motor vehicle sense of "pedal which operates the throttle and thus modulates engine speed" is from 1900; particle physics sense is from 1931.ETD accelerator (n.).2

    accelerando (adv.)

    musical instruction indicating a passage to be played with gradually increasing speed, 1842, from Italian accelerando, present participle of accelerare, from Latin accelerare "to hasten, quicken" (see accelerate).ETD accelerando (adv.).2

    accent (n.)

    late 14c., "particular mode of pronunciation," from Old French acent "accent" (13c.), from Latin accentus "song added to speech," from ad "to" (see ad-) + cantus "a singing," past participle of canere "to sing" (from PIE root *kan- "to sing").ETD accent (n.).2

    The Latin word was a loan-translation of Greek prosōidia, from pros- "to" + ōidē "song," which apparently described the pitch scheme in Greek verse.ETD accent (n.).3

    The meaning "effort in utterance making one syllable stronger than another in pitch or stress" is attested from 1580s; as "mark or character used in writing to indicate accent," it is recorded by 1590s. The decorative-arts sense of "something that emphasizes or highlights" is from 1972.ETD accent (n.).4

    accent (v.)

    "pronounce with accent or stress," 1520s, from French accenter, from Old French acenter "accentuate, stress," from acent (see accent (n.)). The meaning "mark with an accent sign" is from 1660s (implied in accented); the figurative sense of "mark emphatically" is by 1650s. Related: Accenting.ETD accent (v.).2

    accentuate (v.)

    1731, "pronounce with an accent," from Medieval Latin accentuatus, past participle of accentuare "to accent," from Latin accentus "song added to speech," from ad "to" (see ad-) + cantus "a singing," past participle of canere "to sing" (from PIE root *kan- "to sing"). Figurative meaning "emphasize, place an accent or emphasis on" is recorded from 1865.ETD accentuate (v.).2

    Related: Accentuated; accentuating.ETD accentuate (v.).3

    accentuation (n.)

    1690s, from Medieval Latin accentuationem (nominative accentuatio) "intoning, chanting," noun of action from past-participle stem of accentuare "to accent," from Latin accentus "song added to speech," from ad "to" (see ad-) + cantus "a singing," past participle of canere "to sing" (from PIE root *kan- "to sing").ETD accentuation (n.).2

    accentual (adj.)

    "pertaining to accent," c. 1600, from Latin accentus (see accent (n.)) + -al (1). Related: Accentually; accentuality.ETD accentual (adj.).2

    acceptance (n.)

    1570s, from French acceptance, from accepter (see accept), also see -ance. The earlier word was acception (late 14c., accepcioun), from Latin acceptionem; it was common in English until c. 1700. Acceptation is from early 15c. as "action of taking or receiving what is offered," 1590s as "state of being accepted."ETD acceptance (n.).2

    accept (v.)

    late 14c., "to take what is offered; admit and agree to (a proposal, etc.)," from Old French accepter (14c.) or directly from Latin acceptare "take or receive willingly," frequentative of accipere "receive, get without effort," from ad "to" (see ad-) + capere "to take" (from PIE root *kap- "to grasp"). Related: Accepted; accepting.ETD accept (v.).2

    acceptable (adj.)

    late 14c., from Old French acceptable "pleasant, agreeable," from Latin acceptabilis "worthy of acceptance," from acceptare "take or receive willingly" (see accept). Related: Acceptably.ETD acceptable (adj.).2

    acceptability (n.)

    1660s, from Late Latin acceptabilitas, from Latin acceptabilis "worthy of acceptance," from acceptare "take or receive willingly" (see accept). Acceptableness (1610s) is older.ETD acceptability (n.).2

    access (v.)

    "gain access to, be able to use," 1962, originally in computing, from access (n.). Related: Accessed; accessing.ETD access (v.).2

    access (n.)

    early 14c., "an attack of fever," from Old French acces "onslaught, attack; onset (of an illness)," from Latin accessus "a coming to, an approach; way of approach, entrance," noun use of past participle of accedere "to approach," from assimilated form of ad "to" (see ad-) + cedere "go, move, withdraw" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield"). The English sense of "an entrance" (c. 1600) is directly from Latin. The meaning "habit or power of getting into the presence of (someone or something)" is from late 14c.ETD access (n.).2

    accessible (adj.)

    c. 1400, "affording access, capable of being approached or reached," from Old French accessible and directly from Late Latin accessibilis, verbal adjective from Latin accessus "a coming near, an approach; an entrance," from accedere "approach, go to, come near, enter upon" (see accede). The meaning "easy to reach" is from 1640s; of art or writing, "able to be readily understood," by 1961 (a word not needed before writing or art often deliberately was made not so). Related: Accessibility.ETD accessible (adj.).2

    accession (n.)

    1580s, "that which is added," also "act of acceding" (by assent, to an agreement, etc.), from Latin accessionem (nominative accessio) "a going to, approach; a joining; increase, enlargement," noun of action from past-participle stem of accedere "approach, enter upon" (see accede). From 1640s as "act of coming to a position or into possession," especially in reference to a throne. Related: Accessional.ETD accession (n.).2

    accessibility (n.)

    1758, from French accessibilité (from Late Latin accessibilitas), or else a native formation from accessible + -ity.ETD accessibility (n.).2

    accessorize (v.)

    "provide with accessories" (in the decorative arts sense), 1939, from accessory + -ize. Related: Accessorized; accessorizing.ETD accessorize (v.).2

    accessory (n.)

    also accessary, early 15c., "that which is subordinate to something else," also as a legal term, "one aiding in a felony without committing the offense" (as by advising, inciting, concealing), from Late Latin accessorius, from Latin accessor, agent noun of accedere "to approach" (see accede).ETD accessory (n.).2

    Especially in the visual arts, "object introduced to balance composition or enhance artistic effect" (1540s). Attested from 1896 as "woman's smaller articles of dress;" hence accessorize. Related: Accessorial.ETD accessory (n.).3

    accessory (adj.)

    1550s, "subordinate;" c. 1600, "aiding in crime;" 1610s, "aiding in producing some effect," from Late Latin accessorius, from accessor, agent noun from accedere "to approach" (see accede). Meaning "aiding in crime" is from c. 1600.ETD accessory (adj.).2

    accidence (n.)

    late 14c., in philosophy, "non-essential or incidental characteristic," also "part of grammar dealing with inflection" (mid-15c.), in some cases a misspelling of accidents, or else directly from Latin accidentia (used as a term in grammar by Quintilian), neuter plural of accidens, present participle of accidere "to happen, fall out; fall upon" (see accident). The grammar sense is because they are qualities which change in accordance with use (as gender, number, tense, case) but are not essential to the primary signification.ETD accidence (n.).2

    accident (n.)

    late 14c., "an occurrence, incident, event; what comes by chance," from Old French accident (12c.), from Latin accidentem (nominative accidens) "an occurrence; chance; misfortune," noun use of present participle of accidere "happen, fall out, fall upon," from ad "to" (see ad-) + combining form of cadere "to fall" (from PIE root *kad- "to fall").ETD accident (n.).2

    The sense has had a tendency since Latin to extend from "something that happens, an event" to "a mishap, an undesirable event." Latin si quid cui accidat, "if anything should happen to one," was a euphemism for "if one should die." In Middle English the word is met usually in theology (in reference to the material qualities in the sacramental bread and wine), medicine ("something out of the ordinary, disease, injury"), or philosophy ("non-essential characteristic of a thing").ETD accident (n.).3

    From late 15c. as "the operations of chance." Meaning "an unplanned child" is attested by 1932. Accident-prone is from 1926.ETD accident (n.).4

    accidentally (adv.)

    late 14c., "non-essentially," also "unnaturally," from accidental (adj.) + -ly (2). Meaning "unintentionally" is recorded from 1580s; phrase accidentally on purpose is recorded from 1799.ETD accidentally (adv.).2

    accidental (n.)

    late 14c., "non-essential quality," from accidental (adj.). The musical sense is from 1868; so called because they alter the note without essentially changing the key of the passage.ETD accidental (n.).2

    accidental (adj.)

    late 14c., "non-essential," from Old French accidentel or directly from Medieval Latin accidentalis, from Latin accidentem "an accident, chance" (see accident). Meaning "outside the normal course of nature" is from early 15c.; that of "coming by chance, unintentional" is from 1570s. Accidential (1811) sometimes serves now in the sense "characterized by non-essential qualities" and goes with accidence.ETD accidental (adj.).2

    accipiter (n.)

    raptorial bird, 1708, from Latin accipiter, a generic name for birds of prey, especially the common hawk. According to de Vaan, "generally assumed" to be from a Proto-Italic *aku-petri- "having pointed (that is, 'swift') wings" (see acro- + ptero-) and compares Greek okypteros "with swift wings," Sanskrit asu-patvan- "flying swiftly," "all of which are used as epithets to birds of prey." Under this theory the initial acc- is by influence of the verb accipere "to take" (whence also Latin acceptor "falcon;" see accept). Or the sense could be literal, "with pointed wings." The proper plural would be accipitres. Related: Accipitral; accipitrine (1809).ETD accipiter (n.).2

    acclaim (n.)

    "act of acclaiming, a shout of joy," 1667 (in Milton), from acclaim (v.).ETD acclaim (n.).2

    acclaim (v.)

    early 14c., "to lay claim to," from Latin acclamare "to cry out at" (in Medieval Latin "to claim"), from ad "to, toward" (see ad-) + clamare "cry out" (from PIE root *kele- (2) "to shout"). The meaning "to applaud" is recorded by 1630s. The spelling has been conformed to claim. Related: Acclaimed; acclaiming; acclamatory.ETD acclaim (v.).2

    acclamation (n.)

    1540s, "act of shouting or applauding in approval," from Latin acclamationem (nominative acclamatio) "a calling, exclamation, shout of approval," noun of action from past-participle stem of acclamare "to call to, cry out at, shout approval or disapproval of," from assimilated form of ad "to, toward" (see ad-) + clamare "cry out" (from PIE root *kele- (2) "to shout"). As a method of spontaneous approval of resolutions, etc., by unanimous voice vote, by 1801, probably from the French Revolution.ETD acclamation (n.).2

    acclimate (v.)

    1792, "habituate (something) to a new climate," from French acclimater, verb formed from à "to" (see ad-) + climat (see climate). Intransitive sense "adapt to a new climate" is from 1861. Related: Acclimated; acclimating. The extended form acclimatize is now more common in the older sense of this word (generally in reference to plants or animals), leaving to this word the intransitive sense, which more often refers to humans.ETD acclimate (v.).2

    acclimation (n.)

    1826, noun of action from acclimate, "by form-assoc. with words like narrate, narration, in which -ate is a vbl. ending: in acclimate it is part of the stem" [OED]. The word is attested earlier in German and French. Coleridge has acclimatement (1823), which also is found earlier in French.ETD acclimation (n.).2

    acclimatize (v.)

    1824, "modify a living thing to suit a foreign climate" (transitive); see acclimate + -ize. A more recent formation than acclimate and generally replacing it in this sense. Related: Acclimatized; acclimatizing. Simple climatize is attested from 1826 as "inure (a living thing) to a climate."ETD acclimatize (v.).2

    acclimatization (n.)

    "modification of a living thing to allow it to endure in a foreign climate," 1830, noun of action from acclimate. There is or was a tendency to use this word in reference to animals and plants and acclimation of humans.ETD acclimatization (n.).2

    acclinal (adj.)

    in geology, "leaning against," as one stratum of rock against another, both turned up at an angle, 1837, from Latin acclinis "leaning on or against," related to acclinare "to lean on or against," from assimilated form of ad "to, upon" (see ad-) + clinare "to bend" (from PIE *klein-, suffixed form of root *klei- "to lean").ETD acclinal (adj.).2

    acclivity (n.)

    "upward slope of ground," 1610s, from Latin acclivitatem (nominative acclivitas) "an ascending direction, rising grade, upward steepness," from acclivis "mounting upwards, ascending," from ad "to, up to" (see ad-) + clivus "hill, a slope" (from PIE *klei-wo-, suffixed form of root *klei- "to lean").ETD acclivity (n.).2

    accolade (n.)

    1620s, "an embrace about the neck then the tapping of a sword on the shoulders to confer knighthood," from French accolade "an embrace, a kiss" (16c.), from Provençal acolada or Italian accollata, ultimately from noun use of a fem. past participle of Vulgar Latin *accollare "to embrace around the neck," from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + collum "neck" (compare collar (n.)), from PIE root *kwel- (1) "revolve, move round." Also see -ade.ETD accolade (n.).2

    The extended meaning "praise, award" is by 1851. The earlier form of the word in English was accoll (mid-14c.), from Old French acolee "an embrace, kiss, especially that given to a new-made knight," a noun use of the past participle of the verb acoler. The French noun in the 16c. was altered to accolade, with the foreign suffix, and English followed suit.ETD accolade (n.).3

    accommodate (v.)

    1530s, "fit one thing to another," from Latin accomodatus "suitable, fit, appropriate to," past participle of accomodare "make fit, make fit for, adapt, fit one thing to another," from ad "to" (see ad-) + commodare "make fit," from commodus ""proper, fit, appropriate, convenient, satisfactory," from com-, here as an intensive prefix (see com-), + modus "measure, manner" (from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures").ETD accommodate (v.).2

    From late 16c. as "make suitable," also "furnish (someone) with what is wanted," especially "furnish with suitable room and comfort" (1712). Related: Accommodated; accommodating.ETD accommodate (v.).3

    accommodations (n.)

    "lodgings and entertainment," 1722, plural of accommodation, which is attested from c. 1600 as "room and provisions, lodging."ETD accommodations (n.).2

    accommodation (n.)

    c. 1600, "that which supplies a want or need," from French accommodation, from Latin accommodationem (nominative accommodatio) "an adjustment," noun of action from past-participle stem of accommodare "make fit; make fit for" (see accommodate).ETD accommodation (n.).2

    Meaning "appliance, anything which affords aid" is from 1610s; that of "act of accommodating" is from 1640s. Meaning "arrangement of a dispute" is from 1640s. An accommodation train (1838) was one making all stops (as opposed to an expresss); it was used earlier of stages (1811).ETD accommodation (n.).3

    accommodating (adj.)

    "obliging, disposed to yield to the desires of others," 1771, present-participle adjective from accommodate. Related: Accomodatingly. Accomodable is from c. 1600 as "suitable."ETD accommodating (adj.).2

    accompany (v.)

    early 15c., "to be in company with," from Old French acompaignier "take as a companion" (12c., Modern French accompagner), from à "to" (see ad-) + compaignier, from compaign (see companion). The musical meaning "play or sing along with" is by 1570s. Related: Accompanied; accompanying.ETD accompany (v.).2

    accompaniment (n.)

    "something that attends another as a circumstance," 1731 as a term in heraldry, from French accompagnement (13c.), from accompagner (see accompany). In music, "the subordinate part or parts added to a solo or concerted composition," by 1744.ETD accompaniment (n.).2

    accompanying (adj.)

    "going along with, adjoining," by 1782, present-participle adjective from accompany (v.).ETD accompanying (adj.).2

    accompanist (n.)

    "performer who takes the accompanying part in music," 1779, from accompany + -ist. Fowler prefers accompanyist.ETD accompanist (n.).2

    accomplice (n.)

    "associate in crime," 1580s, an unetymological extension of earlier complice "an associate or confederate" (early 15c.), from Old French complice "a confederate, partner" (not in a criminal sense), from Late Latin complicem (nominative complex) "partner, confederate," from Latin complicare "to involve," literally "fold together," from com "with, together" (see com-) + plicare "to fold, weave" (from PIE root *plek- "to plait"). Altered perhaps on model of accomplish, etc., or by assimilation of the indefinite article in a complice.ETD accomplice (n.).2

    accomplish (v.)

    late 14c., "fulfill, perform, carry out an undertaking," from Old French acompliss-, present-participle stem of acomplir "to fulfill, fill up, complete" (12c., Modern French accomplir), from Vulgar Latin *accomplere, from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + complere "to fill up," transferred to "fulfill, finish (a task)," from com-, here probably as an intensive prefix (see com-), + plere "to fill" (from PIE root *pele- (1) "to fill"). Related: Accomplished; accomplishing.ETD accomplish (v.).2

    accomplished (adj.)

    late 14c., "completed, finished," past-participle adjective from accomplish (v.). From late 15c. as "perfect in acquirements as a result of training," from accomplish in an archaic sense "make complete by providing education in what is wanting," especially mental accomplishments and social graces.ETD accomplished (adj.).2

    accomplishment (n.)

    early 15c., "performance of a task; state of completion," from Old French acomplissement "completion, action of accomplishing," from acomplir "to fulfill, carry out, complete" (see accomplish). Meaning "thing completed" and that of "something that completes" someone and fits him or her for cultivated or fashionable society are from c. 1600.ETD accomplishment (n.).2

    accomplishable (adj.)

    "capable of being accomplished," 1792 (Tom Paine), from accomplish + -able. Related: Accomplishability.ETD accomplishable (adj.).2

    accord (v.)

    early 12c., "come into agreement," also "agree, be in harmony," from Old French acorder "agree, be in harmony" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *accordare "make agree," literally "be of one heart, bring heart to heart," from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + cor (genitive cordis) "heart" (used figuratively for "soul, mind"), from PIE root *kerd- "heart." Compare concord, discord. Related: Accorded; according.ETD accord (v.).2

    according (adj./adv.)

    c. 1300, "matching, similar, corresponding" (a sense now obsolete), present-participle adjective and adverb from accord (v.). Meanings "conforming (to), compliant, in agreement; consistent, harmonious; suitable, appropriate" are from late 14c. According to "referring to," literally "in a manner agreeing with" is from late 14c. As an adverb, "often applied to persons, but referring elliptically to their statements or opinions" [Century Dictionary].ETD according (adj./adv.).2

    accordance (n.)

    c. 1300, "compliance;" early 14c., "agreement, concurrence, state of being in accord," from Old French acordance "agreeing, reconciliation, harmony," noun of action from acorder "reconcile, agree, be in harmony" (see accord (v.)).ETD accordance (n.).2

    Of things, "conformity, compatibility, harmony," late 14c. The meaning "formal adjustment of a difference, peace treaty" is from late 13c. Phrase in accordance with is attested by 1793 (in Middle English, in accordance of was the usual form).ETD accordance (n.).3

    accordant (adj.)

    "corresponding, conformable," early 14c., from Old French acordant "agreeing with," from Medieval Latin accordantem (nominative accordans), present participle of accordare "agree," from Vulgar Latin (see accord (v.)). Related: Accordantly.ETD accordant (adj.).2

    accord (n.)

    late 13c., "agreement, harmony of opinions," accourd, acord, from Old French acorde, acort "agreement, alliance," a back-formation from acorder "reconcile, agree, be in harmony" (see accord (v.)). Meaning "will, voluntary impulse or act" (as in of one's own accord) is from mid-15c.ETD accord (n.).2

    accordingly (adv.)

    mid-14c., "in agreement with" (now obsolete), from according + -ly (2). From mid-15c. as "properly, adequately;" meaning "agreeably with logic or expectation" is from 1680s.ETD accordingly (adv.).2

    accordion (n.)

    "small, keyed, bellows-like wind instrument," 1830, from German Akkordion, from Akkord "musical chord, concord of sounds," from a verb similar to Old French acorder "agree, be in harmony," from Vulgar Latin *accordare (compare Italian accordare "to attune a musical instrument;" see accord (v.)), with suffix on analogy of clarion, etc. Invented 1829 by piano-maker Cyrill Demian of Vienna. The type with a keyboard instead of buttons is a piano accordion. Related: Accordionist.ETD accordion (n.).2

    accost (v.)

    1570s, "come side-by-side or face-to-face with," for any reason, from French accoster "move up to, come alongside" (Old French acoster), from Late Latin accostare "come up to the side," from assimilated form of Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + costa "a rib, side" (see coast (n.)). Now usually in the sense "approach and speak to" (1610s). Also picked up as the verb for a prostitute's solicitation of a customer (1812). Related: Accosted; accosting.ETD accost (v.).2

    accouchement (n.)

    "parturition, delivery in childbed," 1803, from French accouchement, noun of action from accoucher "go to childbed" (see accoucheur). The verb accouche (1867) is a back-formation, or else from French accoucher.ETD accouchement (n.).2

    accoucheur (n.)

    1759, "midwife" (properly, "man-midwife," but in English used without regard to gender), "medical practitioner who attends women in childbirth," from French accoucheur (Jules Clément, later 17c.), agent noun from accoucher "to go to childbed, be delivered," from Old French acouchier "deliver" (transitive), "be delivered, give birth" (intransitive), originally simply "to lie down" in one's bed, "go to bed" (12c.), from a- "to" (from Latin ad; see ad-) + Old French culcher "to lie," from Latin collocare, from com- "with" (see com-) + locare "to place," from locus "a place" (see locus). The fem. form, accoucheuse, is attested in English from 1842.ETD accoucheur (n.).2

    account (n.)

    c. 1300, "counting," especially "reckoning of money received and paid, detailed statement of funds owed or spent or property held," from Old French acont "(financial) account, reckoning, terminal payment," from a "to" (see ad-) + cont "counting, reckoning of money to be paid," from Late Latin computus "a calculation," from Latin computare "to count, sum up, reckon together," from com "with, together" (see com-) + putare "to reckon" (originally "to prune," from PIE root *pau- (2) "to cut, strike, stamp").ETD account (n.).2

    From the first it was often in plural form; sometimes in late Middle English it was accompt (see account (v.)). The meaning "course of business dealings requiring records" is from 1640s; hence "arrangement to keep money in a business, bank, etc." (1833), also "customer or client having an account" (1937). Money of account (1690s), that used in reckoning but not circulating as coin or paper, preserves the "counting" sense of the word.ETD account (n.).3

    From the notion of "rendering an account" comes the sense "statement answering for conduct" (mid-14c.) and the general sense "narration, recital of facts," attested by 1610s. From the notion of "statement of reasons" comes on no account "under no circumstances" (1704). Also from c. 1300 in reference to answering for one's conduct, especially at the Last Judgment. The meaning "estimation, consideration," especially in the eyes of others, is from late 14c.ETD account (n.).4

    On account in the financial sense "as an item to be accounted for at the final settlement" is from 1610s, hence on account of in the general sense "for the sake of, in regard to, in consideration of" (1640s, originally upon account of). Also on (my, your, etc.) account "on (one's) behalf." To give accounts "prepare or present a statement of funds and property" is from mid-15c; the older term was cast accounts (mid-14c.); to take account of originally was to make an inventory; take into account "take account of" is from 1680s. The phrase by all accounts is attested from 1798.ETD account (n.).5

    account (v.)

    c. 1300, accounten, "to count, enumerate," from Old French aconter "to enumerate; reckon up, render account" (Modern French conter), from a "to" (see ad-) + conter "to count, tell" (see count (v.)).ETD account (v.).2

    The meaning "reckon for money given or received, render a reckoning," is from late 14c. The sense of "to explain, justify" (c. 1300) is from the notion of "present a detailed explanation of money, etc. held in trust." The transferred sense of "to value, to estimate" (to account as belonging to a certain class of quality) is from late 14c. The intransitive sense of "render an account of particulars" is from late 14c.; hence the transitive sense "give an explanation" (1670s, which usually takes to before a person and for before a thing).ETD account (v.).3

    In later Old French the word was partly re-Latinized as acompter (Modern French accompter), hence late Middle English accompten. Related: Accounted; accounting.ETD account (v.).4

    accountancy (n.)

    "the art of the accountant," 1848, from accountant + abstract noun suffix -cy. Accountantship is attested by 1818.ETD accountancy (n.).2

    accounting (n.)

    "reckoning of numbers," late 14c., verbal noun from account (v.). From 1855 as "management of financial affairs." Phrase no accounting for tastes (1823) translates Latin de gustibus non est disputandum, from account (v.) in the "give an explanation" sense.ETD accounting (n.).2

    accountant (n.)

    mid-15c., "accounting officer, one who renders accounts," from Old French acontant (Modern French accomptant), from present participle of aconter "to count, enumerate" (see account (v.)). The sense of "professional maker of accounts" is recorded from 1530s. The word also was an adjective in Middle English, "accountable; liable to render accounts" (early 15c.).ETD accountant (n.).2

    accountable (adj.)

    "answerable," literally "liable to be called to account," c. 1400 (mid-14c. in Anglo-French), from Old French acontable; see account (v.) + -able. Related: Accountably.ETD accountable (adj.).2

    accountability (n.)

    "state of being answerable," 1770, from accountable + -ity. Earlier was accountableness (1660s).ETD accountability (n.).2

    accouter (v.)

    also accoutre, "to dress or equip" (especially in military clothing and gear), 1590s, from French acoutrer, earlier acostrer (13c.) "arrange, dispose, put on (clothing)," probably originally "sew up," from Vulgar Latin *accosturare "to sew together, sew up," from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + *consutura "a sewing together," from Latin consutus, past participle of consuere "to sew together," from con- (see com-) + suere "to sew" (from PIE root *syu- "to bind, sew"). The English spelling reflects the 16c. French pronunciation. Related: Accoutered; accoutred; accoutering; accoutring.ETD accouter (v.).2

    accoutrement (n.)

    usually plural, accoutrements, "personal clothing and equipment," 1540s, from French accoustrement (Modern French accoutrement), from accoustrer, from Old French acostrer "arrange, dispose, put on (clothing)," probably originally "sew up" (see accouter).ETD accoutrement (n.).2

    accredit (v.)

    1610s, "vouch for, bring into credit," from French accréditer, earlier acrediter, from à "to" (see ad-) + créditer "to credit" (someone with a sum), from crédit "credit" (see credit (n.)). Falsely Latinized in French. The word was rare in English in the original sense but became common in the meaning "confer credit or authority on" (1794). Related: Accredited; accrediting.ETD accredit (v.).2

    accreditation (n.)

    "act of accrediting; state of being accredited," 1806, noun of action from accredit.ETD accreditation (n.).2

    accredited (adj.)

    "furnished with credentials," 1630s, past-participle adjective from accredit (v.).ETD accredited (adj.).2

    accretion (n.)

    1610s, "act of growing by organic enlargement;" 1650s as "that which is formed by continued growth from without," from Latin accretionem (nominative accretio) "an increasing, a growing larger" (as of the waxing moon), noun of action from past-participle stem of accrescere "grow progressively, increase, become greater," from ad "to" (see ad-) + crescere "grow" (from PIE root *ker- (2) "to grow"). It goes with the verb accrue. Related: Accretional; accretionary.ETD accretion (n.).2

    accrue (v.)

    formerly also accrew, mid-15c., acreuen, in reference to property, etc., "to fall to someone as an addition or increment," from Old French acreue "growth, increase, what has grown," fem. of acreu, past participle of acreistre (Modern French accroître) "to increase," from Latin accrescere "grow progressively, increase, become greater," from ad "to" (see ad-) + crescere "grow" (from PIE root *ker- (2) "to grow"). Related: Accrued; accruing.ETD accrue (v.).2

    Apparently an English verb from a French noun because there is no English noun to go with it until much later (the earliest seems to be now-obsolete accrue, 1570s), unless the record is defective. From late 15c. as "happen or result as a natural growth;" from 1881 as "gain by increment, accumulate." Alternative verb accrete "grow by adhesion" (1784) is rare, as is accresce (1630s), from Latin accrescere.ETD accrue (v.).3

    accrual (n.)

    "act or process of accruing," 1782, from accrue + -al (2). Compare accretion. Another older noun was accruement (c. 1600).ETD accrual (n.).2

    acculturation (n.)

    "the adoption and assimilation of an alien culture" [OED], 1880, from assimilated form of ad- "to" + culture (n.) + noun ending -ation.ETD acculturation (n.).2

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