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    reassign (v.) — reck (v.)

    reassign (v.)

    also re-assign, "assign again," 1610s, from re- "back, again" + assign (v.). Related: Reassigned; reassigning; reassignment.ETD reassign (v.).2

    reassurance (n.)

    also re-assurance, 1610s, "assurance or confirmation repeated," from reassure + -ance. Meaning "restoration of courage or confidence" is by 1875.ETD reassurance (n.).2

    reassure (v.)

    also re-assure, "restore (someone) to confidence," 1590s, from re- "back, again" + assure. Related: Reassured; reassuring.ETD reassure (v.).2

    reattach (v.)

    also re-attach, "attach anew or again," in any sense, c. 1600 originally in legalese and now obsolete in that sense; see re- "back, again" + attach (v.). The general sense of "to attach again" is by 1813 and might be a new formation. Related: Reattached; reattaching; reattachment (1570s in the legal sense).ETD reattach (v.).2

    reattempt (v.)

    also re-attempt, "attempt again or anew," 1580s; see re- "back, again" + attempt (v.). Related: Reattempted; reattempting.ETD reattempt (v.).2

    reave (v.)

    Middle English reven "to rob plunder," from Old English reafian "to rob (something from someone), plunder, pillage, take away by force or stealth," from Proto-Germanic *raubōjanan "to rob, deprive of" (source also of Old Frisian ravia, Middle Dutch roven, Dutch rooven, Old High German roubon, German rauben), from PIE *runp- "to break" (see corrupt (adj.)).ETD reave (v.).2

    Related: Reaved; reaving. Now obsolete or archaic or dialectal only. The old past participle was reft. Also compare bereave. OED reports that the forms reive, rieve, originally Scottish, were sometimes used "when the reference is to the taking of goods or cattle by force," hence reiver, reiver, etc., e.g. "The Reivers," Faulkner's novel.ETD reave (v.).3

    reaver (n.)

    also reiver, Middle English rever, revere, "robber, destroyer, plunderer," Old English reafere "plundering forager," agent noun from reafian "to rob, plunder" (see reave (v.)). Similar formation in Old Frisian ravere, Middle Dutch rover, Dutch roover, Old High German roubari, German Räuber. Middle English rēverie (c. 1300) meant "robbery, plundering."ETD reaver (n.).2

    reawaken (v.)

    also re-awaken, "awaken again," 1810, from re- + awaken. Related: Reawakened; reawakening.ETD reawaken (v.).2

    reb (n.)

    abbreviation of rebel (n.), 1862, a word from the U.S. Civil War, in which the Confederates embraced the North's designation of them as rebels. Along with rebelism (1862), rebeldom "the region or sphere of rebels" (1862) and others, for which see rebel (n.).ETD reb (n.).2

    rebar (n.)

    also re-bar, "steel reinforcing rod in concrete," 1961, from re(inforced) bar (n.1).ETD rebar (n.).2

    rebarbative (adj.)

    "repellent, unattractive," 1885, from French rébarbatif (14c.), from barbe "beard," from Latin barba (see barb (n.)). The usual theory is that it refers to the itchy, irritating quality of a beard.ETD rebarbative (adj.).2

    rebate (v.)

    late 14c., rebaten, "to reduce, diminish;" early 15c., "to deduct, subtract," from Old French rebatre, rabatre, rabattre "beat down, drive back," also "deduct," from re-, "back," or perhaps "repeatedly" (see re-) + abattre "beat down" (see abate).ETD rebate (v.).2

    Original senses now are obsolete. The meaning "to pay back (a sum) as a rebate" is from 1957 and might be from rebate (v.). Related: Rebated; rebating.ETD rebate (v.).3

    rebate (n.)

    1650s, "an allowance by way of discount, deduction from a sum of money to be paid," from rebate (v.). By 1882 as "a repayment, money paid back."ETD rebate (n.).2

    rebbe (n.)

    "a rabbi," 1881, from Yiddish, from Hebrew rabbi (see rabbi).ETD rebbe (n.).2

    rebec (n.)

    small medieval three-stringed musical instrument with a pear-shaped sound box, played with a bow, early 15c., rebekke, from Old French rebec (15c.), an unexplained alteration (perhaps somehow influenced by bec "beak") of ribabe (13c.), which is ultimately from Arabic rebab.ETD rebec (n.).2

    Compare Old Provençal rebec, also, with random alterations, Middle English ribibe (c. 1400), ribible (early 14c.), Italian ribeca, ribebla, Portuguese arrabil, Spanish rabel. The same word also was used disparagingly for "old woman, crone," but the connection is unclear and it might involve the name Rebecca.ETD rebec (n.).3


    fem. proper name, biblical wife of Isaac, mother of Jacob and Esau, from Late Latin Rebecca, from Greek Rhebekka, from Hebrew Ribhqeh, literally "connection" (compare ribhqah "team"), from Semitic base r-b-q "to tie, couple, join" (compare Arabic rabaqa "he tied fast"). Rebekah, the form of the name in the Authorized Version, was taken as the name of a society of women (founded 1851 in Indiana, U.S.) as a complement to the Odd Fellows.ETD Rebecca.2

    rebegin (v.)

    also re-begin, "to start anew or again," 1590s, from re- "again" + begin (v.).ETD rebegin (v.).2

    rebel (adj.)

    c. 1300, "resisting an established or rightful government or law, insurrectionist; lawless," from Old French rebelle "stubborn, obstinate, rebellious" (12c.) and directly from Latin rebellis "insurgent, rebellious," from rebellare "to rebel, revolt," from re- "opposite, against," or perhaps "again" (see re-) + bellare "wage war," from bellum "war" (see bellicose). By 1680s as "belonging to or controlled by rebels."ETD rebel (adj.).2

    rebel (v.)

    late 14c., rebellen, "rise up against (a ruler, one's government, etc.); be insubordinate," from Old French rebeller (14c.) and directly from Latin rebellare "to revolt" (see rebel (adj.)). In general, "make war against anything deemed oppressive" from late 14c. Related: Rebelled; rebelling.ETD rebel (v.).2

    rebel (n.)

    "one who refuses obedience to a superior or controlling power or principle; one who resists an established government; person who renounces and makes war on his country for political motives," mid-14c., originally in reference to rebellion against God, from rebel (adj.).ETD rebel (n.).2

    By mid-15c. in the general sense of "obstinate or refractory person." The meaning "supporter of the American cause in the War of Independence" is by May 1775; sense of "supporter of the Southern cause in the American Civil War" is attested from April 15, 1861.ETD rebel (n.).3

    The Civil War's rebel yell is attested from 1862, but the thing itself is older and was said to have been picked up by (then) southwestern men in their periodic wars against the Indians.ETD rebel (n.).4

    Rebel without a cause is from the title of the 1955 Warner Bros. film, a title said to have been adopted from psychiatrist Robert M. Linder's 1944 classic "Rebel Without a Cause," which follows the successful analysis and hypnosis of a criminal psychopath but otherwise has nothing to do with the movie.ETD rebel (n.).5

    rebellious (adj.)

    "insubordinate, defying lawful authority, acting as rebels do or having the disposition of one," early 15c., from Latin rebellis (see rebel (adj.)) + -ous. Of things, "hard to treat or deal with," 1570s. Another old word for it was rebellant (early 15c.). Related: Rebelliously; rebelliousness.ETD rebellious (adj.).2

    rebellion (n.)

    "war waged against a government by some portion of its subjects" (originally especially against God or Church authority), mid-14c., rebellioun, from Old French rebellion (14c.) and directly from Latin rebellionem (nominative rebellio) "rebellion, revolt; renewal of war," from rebellis "insurgent, rebellious" (see rebel (adj.)).ETD rebellion (n.).2

    rebirth (n.)

    1812, "reincarnation, repeated birth into temporal existence;" 1833, "renewed life or activity, reanimation, regeneration," from re- "back, again" + birth (n.).ETD rebirth (n.).2

    reboot (v.)

    "shut down and restart" (a computer or computer program), 1981, from re- "again" + boot (v.2) in the computer sense. Related: Rebooted; rebooting.ETD reboot (v.).2

    rebop (n.)

    see bebop.ETD rebop (n.).2

    reborn (adj.)

    "born again or anew," physically or spiritually, 1590s, from re- "back, again" + born.ETD reborn (adj.).2

    reborrow (v.)

    "borrow back again, borrow anew," 1630s, from re- "back, again" + borrow (v.). Related: Reborrowed; reborrowing.ETD reborrow (v.).2

    rebound (v.)

    late 14c., rebounden, "to spring, leap," also "to spring back from a force or an impact," from Old French rebondir "leap back, resound; repulse, push back," from re- "back" (see re-) + bondir "leap, bound" (see bound (v.)).ETD rebound (v.).2

    By early 15c. in the transferred or figurative sense of "fall back, recoil," as to a starting point or former state. The sporting use probably was first in tennis; in basketball it is attested from 1914. In Middle English also "return to afflict" (early 15c.). Related: Rebounded; rebounding.ETD rebound (v.).3

    rebound (n.)

    mid-15c. as "a rejoinder, a reply" (a sense now archaic or obsolete); 1520s, "the return or bounding back of something after striking, act of flying back on collision with another body" in reference to a ball, from rebound (v.); rebounding in this sense is from late 14c.ETD rebound (n.).2

    In modern sports, from 1917 in ice hockey, 1920 in basketball. Transferred and figurative senses from 1560s; the meaning "period of reaction or renewed activity after disturbance" is from 1570s, hence "during a period of reaction after the end of a romantic or marital relationship" (1859).ETD rebound (n.).3

    rebroadcast (v.)

    also re-broadcast, "to broadcast again," especially on a different station, originally of radio, 1923, from re- "again" + broadcast (v.). As a noun by 1927. Related: Rebroadcasting.ETD rebroadcast (v.).2

    rebus (n.)

    a puzzle or riddle consisting of words or phrases represented by pictures of objects whose names resemble in sound the words or phrases intended, c. 1600, apparently from Latin rebus (and meaning literally "by means of objects"), ablative plural of res "thing, object" (see re). According to French sources (Gilles Ménage, "Les origines de la langue françoise," 1650), principally from the phrase de rebus quæ geruntur "of things which are going on," in reference to the satirical pieces composed by Picardy clerks at carnivals, subtle satires of current events using pictures to suggest words, phrases or things. Or this use of the Latin word might be from the representations being non verbis sed rebus "not by words, but by things."ETD rebus (n.).2

    rebuff (n.)

    "a repelling; a check, a defeat; peremptory denial or refusal," 1610s, from rebuff (v.), or from French rebuffe or Italian ribuffo.ETD rebuff (n.).2

    rebuff (v.)

    "make blunt resistance to, put off with abrupt denial," 1580s, from obsolete French rebuffer "to check, snub," from Italian ribuffare "to check, chide, snide," from ribuffo "a snub," from ri- "back" (from Latin re-, see re-) + buffo "a puff," a word of imitative origin (compare buffoon, also buffet (n.2)). Related: Rebuffed; rebuffing.ETD rebuff (v.).2

    rebuild (v.)

    "build up again, construct what has been demolished," c. 1600 (implied in rebuilding), from re- "back, again" + build (v.). Related: Rebuilt.ETD rebuild (v.).2

    rebuke (n.)

    early 15c., "a reproof for fault or wrong, a direct reprimand," also "an insult, a rebuff," and in the now archaic sense of "a shame, disgrace," from rebuke (v.). From mid-15c. as "a setback, a defeat."ETD rebuke (n.).2

    rebuke (v.)

    early 14c., rebuken, "to reprimand, reprove directly and pointedly; chide, scold," from Anglo-French rebuker "to repel, beat back," Old French rebuchier, from re- "back" (see re-) + buschier "to strike, chop wood," from busche (French bûche) "wood," from a West Germanic *busk "bush, thicket" (see bush (n.)). Related: Rebuked; rebuking; rebukingly.ETD rebuke (v.).2

    reburial (n.)

    "a second or subsequent burial, a burying again," also re-burial, 1783; see re- "back, again" + burial (n.). Related: Rebury; reburied.ETD reburial (n.).2

    rebut (v.)

    c. 1300, rebouten, "to thrust back," from Old French reboter, rebuter "to thrust back," from re- "back" (see re-) + boter "to strike, push," from a Germanic source (from Proto-Germanic buttan, from PIE root *bhau- "to strike").ETD rebut (v.).2

    Also in Middle English "assail (someone) with violent language, rebuke" (c. 1300); "repel in battle, repulse" (mid-14c.). The legalese sense of "try to disprove, refute by evidence or argument, bring counter-argument against" is attested by 1817. Related: Rebutted; rebutting.ETD rebut (v.).3

    rebuttal (n.)

    "an act of rebutting; refutation, contradiction," 1793, from rebut + -al (2). Earlier were rebutment (1590s) and rebutter (1530s, in law).ETD rebuttal (n.).2

    rec (n.)

    1929 as a shortening of recreation.ETD rec (n.).2

    recall (v.)

    1580s, "call back from a distance, to bring back by calling upon," from re- "back, again, to a former state" + call (v.); in some cases a loan-translation of French rappeler (see repeal (v.)) or Latin revocare "to rescind, call back" (see revoke).ETD recall (v.).2

    A Latin-Germanic hybrid. The meaning "to revoke, take back, countermand" is by 1580s. The sense of "bring back to memory, call back to the mind or perception" is attested from 1610s. Related: Recalled; recalling.ETD recall (v.).3

    recall (n.)

    1610s, "a calling back, a summons to return;" 1650s, "a calling back to the mind," from recall (v.). In U.S. politics, "removal of an elected official," 1902.ETD recall (n.).2

    recalcitrant (adj.)

    "refusing to submit, not submissive or compliant," 1823, from French récalcitrant, literally "kicking back" (17c.-18c.), from Late Latin recalcitrantem (nominative recalcitrans), present participle of recalcitrare "to kick back" (of horses), also "be inaccessible," in Late Latin "to be petulant or disobedient;" from re- "back" (see re-) + Latin calcitrare "to kick," from calx (genitive calcis) "heel" (see calcaneus). Used from 1797 as a French word in English.ETD recalcitrant (adj.).2

    recalcitrance (n.)

    "refusal of submission, obstinate noncompliance or nonconformity," 1845, from French récalcitrance or a native formation from recalcitrant + -ance.ETD recalcitrance (n.).2

    recalcitrate (v.)

    1620s, "to kick out," from Latin recalcitratus, past participle of recalcitrare "to kick back" (see recalcitrant). Sense of "resist obstinately" is from 1759. Related: Recalcitrated; recalcitrating; recalcitration.ETD recalcitrate (v.).2

    recalibrate (v.)

    "to calibrate anew or again, adjust the calibration of," 1883, from re- "again" + calibrate (v.). Related: Recalibrated; recalibrating.ETD recalibrate (v.).2

    recant (v.)

    "to unsay, to contradict or withdraw a declaration or proposition," 1530s, from Latin recantare "recall, revoke," from re- "back" (see re-) + cantare, literally "to chant, to sing" (from PIE root *kan- "to sing"). The English word is from the Reformation; the Latin verb is a loan-translation of Greek palinoidein "recant," from palin "back" + oeidein "to sing." Related: Recanted; recanting. It was used occasionally 17c. in an etymological sense of "sing over again" (with re- = "again").ETD recant (v.).2

    recantation (n.)

    "act of recanting; a retraction," 1540s, noun of action from recant.ETD recantation (n.).2

    recap (v.)

    1856, "put a cap again on" something, originally typically a cartridge, from re- "again" + cap (v.). The specific sense of "put a strip of rubber on the tread of a tire" is from 1920s; hence, as a noun, "a recapped auto tire" (1939). As a shortened form of recapitulate (v.), it dates from 1920s. Related: Recapped; recapping.ETD recap (v.).2

    recapitulation (n.)

    late 14c., recapitulacioun, "a short summary; process or act of summarizing," from Old French recapitulacion (13c.) and directly from Late Latin recapitulationem (nominative recapitulatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of recapitulare "go over the main points of a thing again," literally "restate by heads or chapters."ETD recapitulation (n.).2

    This is from re- "again" (see re-) + capitulum "main part," literally "little head," diminutive of caput "head," also "leader, guide, chief person; summit; capital city; origin, source, spring," figuratively "life, physical life;" in writing "a division, paragraph;" of money, "the principal sum" (from PIE root *kaput- "head").ETD recapitulation (n.).3

    The Latin word is technically, a loan-translation of Greek anakephalaiōsis. In biology, in reference to evolutionary stages and the growth of the individual young animal, by 1875. Music sense is by 1879. Related: Recapitulative; recapitulatory.ETD recapitulation (n.).4

    recapitulate (v.)

    "repeat the principal things mentioned in a preceding discourse," 1560s, back-formation from recapitulation (q.v.) and also from Late Latin recapitulatus, past participle of recapitulare "go over the main points of a thing again," literally "restate by heads or chapters." Related: Recapitulated; recapitulating; recapitulative. As an adjective, Faulkner uses recapitulant.ETD recapitulate (v.).2

    That English keeps the proper classical sense in this word but gives simple capitulate only a restricted or extended sense is a curiosity that has been noted by Trench, G. Saintsbury ("Minor Poets of the Caroline Period"), etc.ETD recapitulate (v.).3

    recaption (n.)

    1768, "act of taking, reprisal," especially "peaceful extra-legal seizure of one's own property wrongfully taken or withheld;" see re- "back, again" + caption (n.).ETD recaption (n.).2

    recapture (v.)

    "capture back or again, recover by capture," 1783; see re- "back, again" + capture (v.); perhaps formed to go with recapture (n.). Related: Recaptured; recapturing.ETD recapture (v.).2

    recapture (n.)

    "the act of retaking; fact of being taken again; that which is retaken;" 1680s; see re- "back, again" + capture (n.).ETD recapture (n.).2

    recarry (v.)

    also re-carry, "carry (something) back again," early 15c.; see re- "back, again" + carry (v.). Related: Recarried; recarrying; recarriage.ETD recarry (v.).2

    recast (v.)

    also re-cast, c. 1600, "to throw again," from re- "back, again" + cast (v.). Sense of "to cast or form anew, remodel," especially of literary works and other writing, is from 1790. Meaning "compute anew" is by 1865. Theater sense of "assign an actor or role to another role or actor" is by 1951. Related: Recasting. As a noun, "a fresh molding, arrangement, or modification," by 1840.ETD recast (v.).2


    1941, World War II military slang, short for reconnaissance (n.). As a verb by 1943. The World War I military slang term for the noun was recco (1917). Also compare recon.ETD recce.2

    recede (v.)

    early 15c., receden, "to depart, go away," a sense now rare or obsolete; of things, "to move back, retreat, withdraw," from Old French receder and directly from Latin recedere "to go back, fall back; withdraw, depart, retire," from re- "back" (see re-) + cedere "to go" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield"). Sense of "to have a backward inclination, slope, or tendency" is by 1866. Related: Receded; receding.ETD recede (v.).2

    receipt (n.)

    late 14c., receit, "act of receiving;" also "statement of ingredients in and formula for making a potion or medicine" (compare recipe); from Anglo-French or Old North French receite "receipt, recipe, prescription" (c. 1300), altered (by influence of receit "he receives," from Vulgar Latin *recipit) from Old French recete. This is from Medieval Latin Latin recepta "thing or money received," in classical Latin "received," fem. past participle of recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive).ETD receipt (n.).2

    The classical -p- began to be restored in the English word after c. 1500, but the pronunciation did not follow. Conceit, deceit, and receipt all are from Latin capere; the -p- sometimes was restored in all three of them, but it has stuck only in the last. The meaning "written acknowledgment for having received something specified" is from c. 1600.ETD receipt (n.).3

    receive (v.)

    c. 1300, receiven, "take into one's possession, accept possession of," also in reference to the sacrament, from Old North French receivre (Old French recoivre) "seize, take hold of, pick up; welcome, accept," from Latin recipere "regain, take back, bring back, carry back, recover; take to oneself, take in, admit," from re- "back," though the exact sense here is obscure (see re-) + -cipere, combining form of capere "to take" (from PIE root *kap- "to grasp").ETD receive (v.).2

    From c. 1300 as "welcome (in a specified manner)." From early 14c. as "catch in the manner of a receptacle." From mid-14c. as "obtain as one's reward." From late 14c. as "accept as authoritative or true;" also late 14c. as "have a blow or wound inflicted." Radio and (later) television sense is attested from 1908. Related: Received; receiving. Receiving line is by 1933.ETD receive (v.).3

    Other obsolete English verbs from the same Latin word in different forms included recept "to receive, take in" (early 15c., recepten, from Old French recepter, variant of receter and Latin receptus). Also compare receipt, which also had a verb form in Middle English, receiten.ETD receive (v.).4

    receivable (adj.)

    "able to be received" in any sense; "capable of reception," late 14c., from receive + -able, and in part from Anglo-French or Old French recevable, from Old French recoivre. Related: Receivableness; receivability. Receivables (n.) "debts owed to a business" is by 1863.ETD receivable (adj.).2

    received (adj.)

    "generally accepted as true or good," mid-15c., receyvyd, past-participle adjective from receive. Of opinions from c. 1600; of ideas (idée reçue), 1959. Thomas Browne called such notions receptaries (1646).ETD received (adj.).2

    receiver (n.)

    mid-14c., receivour (mid-13c. as a surname, probably in the "government clerk" sense), "a recipient; a receiver (of stolen goods); person who knowingly harbors criminals," also "government official appointed to collect or receive money due," agent noun from receive, or from Old French recevere (Modern French receveur), agent noun from recievere.ETD receiver (n.).2

    From late 14c. as "receptacle, container." As a telephone apparatus, from 1877; in reference to a radio unit, from 1891; in U.S. football sense, from 1897. Middle English also has receitour in the sense "receiver of stolen goods" (late 14c.); also compare receptor.ETD receiver (n.).3

    receivership (n.)

    late 15c., "office of a receiver of public revenues," from receiver + -ship. As "condition of being under control of a receiver," 1884.ETD receivership (n.).2

    recency (n.)

    "state or quality of being recent," 1610s, from Medieval Latin recentia, from Latin recentem (nominative recens) "lately done or made, new, fresh, young" (see recent (adj.)).ETD recency (n.).2

    recension (n.)

    1630s, "review, examination, enumeration" (senses now obsolete), from Latin recensionem (nominative recensio) "an enumeration," noun of action from past-participle stem of recensere "to count, enumerate, survey," from re-, here perhaps intensive (see re-) + censere "to tax, rate, assess, estimate" (see censor (n.)). From c. 1820 as "a critical or methodical revision" (of a text), also "a text established by critical or systematic revision."ETD recension (n.).2

    recent (adj.)

    early 15c., "recently made," of foods, etc., "fresh, newly made," from Latin recentem (nominative recens) "lately done or made, of recent origin, new, fresh, young," from re- (see re-) + PIE root *ken- "fresh, new, young" (source also of Greek kainos "new;" Sanskrit kanina- "young;" Old Irish cetu- "first," Breton kent "earlier;" Old Church Slavonic načino "to begin," koni "beginning").ETD recent (adj.).2

    Meaning "of or pertaining to the time just before the present" is by 1620s. Related: Recently; recentness ("state or quality of being recent," 1670s, but OED reports recency (1610s) was "Common in 19th c.").ETD recent (adj.).3

    reception (n.)

    late 14c., recepcion, in astrology, "the effect of two planets on each other;" late 15c. in the general sense of "the act or fact of getting or receiving; the receiving of something in the manner of a receptacle;" from Old French reception and directly from Latin receptionem (nominative receptio) "a receiving," noun of action from past-participle stem of recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive).ETD reception (n.).2

    The sense of "action of receiving (persons) or of being received in a formal or ceremonial manner" is from 1660s; earlier it meant act or fact of being received into a company, class, etc., or in a certain manner (1640s). The meaning "ceremonial gathering of persons to be received or greeted" is by 1865, from a sense in French. Radio (later television) sense of "the receiving of broadcast signals" is by 1907. Reception room, set aside for the reception of visitors, is by 1829.ETD reception (n.).3

    receptive (adj.)

    early 15c., "having the quality of receiving, acting as a receptacle," from Medieval Latin receptivus, from Latin recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive). Meaning "affecting or relating to the comprehension of speech or writing" is from 1926. Related: Receptively; receptiveness; receptivity.ETD receptive (adj.).2

    receptacle (n.)

    "place for receiving or containing something," late 14c., from Old French receptacle (14c.) and directly from Latin receptaculum "place to receive and store things," from receptare, frequentative of recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive). As an adjectival form, receptacular (1847) has been used.ETD receptacle (n.).2

    receptionist (n.)

    "person hired to receive clients in an office," 1900, from reception + -ist.ETD receptionist (n.).2

    Originally in photography studios.ETD receptionist (n.).3

    Earlier as an adjective in theology and law (1867).ETD receptionist (n.).4

    receptor (n.)

    mid-15c. (late 13c., Anglo-French), receptour, "a knowing harborer of criminals, heretics, etc.," from Old French receptour or directly from Latin receptor, agent noun from recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive). Molecular biology sense is from 1900. Compare receiver. A receptory (early 15c., from Medieval Latin) was, among other definitions, an alchemical flask for receiving distillates.ETD receptor (n.).2

    recess (n.)

    1530s, "act of receding or going back or away" (a sense now obsolete), from Latin recessus "a going back, retreat," from recessum, past participle of recedere "to go back, fall back; withdraw, depart, retire," from re- "back" (see re-) + cedere "to go" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield").ETD recess (n.).2

    Meaning "hidden or remote part" is recorded from 1610s; that of "period of stopping from usual work" is from 1620s, probably from parliamentary notion of "recessing" into private chambers. Meaning "place of retirement or seclusion" is from 1630s; that of "niche, receding space or inward indentation in a line of continuity" is from 1690s.ETD recess (n.).3

    recess (v.)

    1809, "place in a recess," literal or figurative, from recess (n.). By 1845 as "make a recess in." Intransitive sense of "take a recess, adjourn for a short time" is by 1893. Related: Recessed; recessing.ETD recess (v.).2

    recession (n.)

    1640s, "act of receding, a going back," from French récession "a going backward, a withdrawing," and directly from Latin recessionem (nominative recessio) "a going back," noun of action from past-participle stem of recedere "to go back, fall back; withdraw, depart, retire," from re- "back" (see re-) + cedere "to go" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield").ETD recession (n.).2

    The sense of "temporary decline in economic activity" was a fall-of-1929 coinage, probably a noun of action from recess (v.):ETD recession (n.).3

    Ayto ("20th Century Words") notes, "There was more than a hint of euphemism in the coining of this term."ETD recession (n.).4

    recessive (adj.)

    1670s, "tending to recede, going backward," from Latin recess-, past-participle stem of recedere "to go back, fall back" (see recede) + -ive. Linguistics sense in ancient Greek grammar is from 1879; in genetics, of a hereditary trait present but not perceptibly expressed in the individual organism, 1900, from German recessiv (Mendel, 1865). Related: Recessively; recessiveness.ETD recessive (adj.).2

    recessional (adj.)

    "pertaining to or concerned with recession," in any sense, 1858, from recession + -al (1). As a noun, "hymn sung while the clergy and choir are leaving the church," 1864, with -al (2). The adjective in the economic sense of recession is usually recessionary (1949, in U.S. government reports).ETD recessional (adj.).2

    re-charge (v.)

    "rush at or attack back or again," intransitive, 1590s, from re- "back, again" + charge (v.). Related: Re-charged; re-charging.ETD re-charge (v.).2

    recharge (v.)

    early 15c., "to reload" (a vessel), from re- "again, back" + charge (v.) "to load" (q.v.); modeled on Old French rechargier "to load, load back on" (13c.). The general sense of "put a fresh charge in, reload, refill" is by 1839 and might be a new formation from the same elements. The meaning "re-power" a battery is from 1876, hence the figurative senses of "restore fitness, refresh mental composure" (by 1921). Related: Recharged; recharging. The noun is recorded from 1610s in English, "a fresh charge or load."ETD recharge (v.).2

    rechargeable (adj.)

    1901 of batteries, etc., from recharge + -able. Earlier in financial accounts.ETD rechargeable (adj.).2

    recheck (v.)

    also re-check, "to check again," 1902, from re- "back, again" + check (v.). Related: Rechecked; rechecking.ETD recheck (v.).2

    recherche (adj.)

    "much sought-after, uncommon, rare," 1722, from French recherché "carefully sought out," past-participle adjective from rechercher "to seek out" (12c.), from re-, here perhaps suggesting repeated activity (see re-) + chercher "to search," from Latin circare, in Late Latin "to wander hither and thither," from circus "circle" (see circus). Commonly used 19c. of food, styles, etc., to denote obscure excellence. "À la recherche du temps perdu" is the title of Proust's great novel of reminiscence (1913).ETD recherche (adj.).2

    rechristen (v.)

    also re-christen, "rename, name anew," 1796, from re- "back, again" + christen (v.). Related: Rechristened; rechristening.ETD rechristen (v.).2

    recidivism (n.)

    "habit of relapsing" (into crime), 1882, from recidivist + -ism, modeled on French récidivisme, from récidiver. Recidivation as "a falling back, backsliding" in the spiritual sense is attested early 15c. (recidivacion), but OED has no examples after c. 1700. Recidivous "liable to backslide to a former condition or state" is a dictionary word from 1650s.ETD recidivism (n.).2

    recidivate (v.)

    "fall back; relapse, return to an abandoned course of conduct," 1610s (1520s as a past-participle adjective), from Medieval Latin recidivatus, past participle of recidivare "to relapse" (see recidivist). Marked as obsolete in OED 2nd edition (1989). Related: Recidivated; recidivating. Recidiving "relapsing into sin" is attested from c. 1500, from Old French recidiver and Medieval Latin recidivare.ETD recidivate (v.).2

    recidivist (n.)

    "relapsed criminal," 1863, from French legal term récidiviste (by 1847), from récidiver "to fall back, relapse," from Medieval Latin recidivare "to relapse into sin," from Latin recidivus "falling back," from recidere "fall back," from re- "back, again" (see re-) + combining form of cadere "to fall" (from PIE root *kad- "to fall"). As an adjective by 1883.ETD recidivist (n.).2

    recipe (n.)

    1580s, "medical prescription, a formula for the composing of a remedy written by a physician," from French récipé (15c.), from Latin recipe "take!" (this or that ingredient), second person imperative singular of recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive). It was the word written by physicians at the head of prescriptions. Figurative meaning "a prescribed formula" is from 1640s. Meaning "instructions for preparing a particular food" is recorded by 1716. The older sense in English survives chiefly in the pharmacist's abbreviation Rx. Compare receipt.ETD recipe (n.).2

    recipient (n.)

    "a receiver or taker," especially "one who receives or accepts something given," 1550s, from French récipient (16c.) and directly from Latin recipientem (nominative recipiens), present participle of recipere "to hold, contain" (see receive). As an adjective in English, "receiving, receptive, acting or capable of serving as a receiver," from 1610s. Related: Recipience "a receiving, the act of or capacity for receiving" (1882); recipiency (1822).ETD recipient (n.).2

    reciprocate (v.)

    1610s, "to give and return mutually," a back-formation from reciprocation, or else from Latin reciprocatus, past participle of reciprocare "rise and fall, move back and forth; reverse the motion of," from reciprocus "returning the same way, alternating" (see reciprocal). Sense of "cause to move back and forth" is from 1650s; intransitive sense of "move backward and forward" is from 1670s. Meaning "to give or do in response, act in return or response" is from 1820. Related: Reciprocated; reciprocating.ETD reciprocate (v.).2

    reciprocal (adj.)

    1570s, "existing on both sides, exclusive or interchangeable" (of duties, etc.), with -al (1) + stem of Latin reciprocus "returning the same way, alternating," from pre-Latin *reco-proco-, from *recus (from re- "back;" see re-, + -cus, adjective formation) + *procus (from pro- "forward," see pro-, + -cus). Related: Reciprocally.ETD reciprocal (adj.).2

    From 1590s as "given, felt, or shown in return;" c. 1600 as "corresponding or answering to each other, mutually equivalent." The sense of "moving backward and forward, having an alternating back and forth motion" (c. 1600) is obsolete. The noun meaning "that which is reciprocal" (to another) is from 1560s. In scientific and mechanical uses, reciprocating, reciprocative (1804), and reciprocatory (1826) have been tried.ETD reciprocal (adj.).3

    reciprocation (n.)

    1520s, "a reflexive mode of expression;" 1560s, "act of making a return (especially if mutual), mutual giving and returning, interchange of acts," from Latin reciprocationem (nominative reciprocatio) "retrogression, alternation, ebb," noun of action from past-participle stem of reciprocare "move back, turn back," also "come and go, move back and forth;" from reciprocus "returning the same way; alternating" (see reciprocal).ETD reciprocation (n.).2

    reciprocating (adj.)

    "moving backwards and forwards," 1690s, present-participle adjective from reciprocate (v.). Specifically of machines, "having reciprocating parts," by 1822.ETD reciprocating (adj.).2

    reciprocity (n.)

    "state or condition of free interchange, mutual responsiveness," 1766, from French réciprocité (18c.), from reciproque, from Latin reciprocus, past participle of reciprocare "rise and fall, move back and forth; reverse the motion of" (see reciprocal). Specifically as "equality of commercial privileges between the subjects of different governments" is by 1782. Related: Reciprocality (1650s).ETD reciprocity (n.).2

    reciprocornous (adj.)

    "having horns turning backward and then forward," as a ram, 1775, with -ous + Latin reciprocicornis, from reciprocus "turning back the same way" (see reciprocal) + cornu "horn" (see horn (n.)). "This form is characteristic of the sheep tribe, though not peculiar to it" [Century Dictionary].ETD reciprocornous (adj.).2

    recirculate (v.)

    also re-circulate, "to circulate anew or again," 1716, from re- "back, again" + circulate (v.). Related: Recirculated; recirculating; recirculation (1610s).ETD recirculate (v.).2

    recision (n.)

    "act of cutting off," especially in surgery, 1610s, from French recision, alteration of rescision (from Late Latin rescissionem "annulment;" see rescission), influenced in form by Late Latin recisionem (nominative recisio) "a cutting back," noun of action from past-participle stem of recidere "to cut back" (see recidivist).ETD recision (n.).2

    recitation (n.)

    late 15c., recitacion, "account, description, act of detailing, recital," from Old French récitation (14c.) and directly from Latin recitationem (nominative recitatio) "public reading, a reading aloud of judicial decrees or literary works," noun of action from past-participle stem of recitare "read out, read aloud" (see recite).ETD recitation (n.).2

    Meaning "act of repeating aloud what has been committed to memory" is from 1620s; that of "repetition of a prepared lesson" by a pupil or students is by 1770, American English.ETD recitation (n.).3

    recitative (n.)

    "style of musical declamation intermediate between speech and singing, form of song resembling declamation," 1650s, from Italian recitativo, from recitato, past participle of recitare, from Latin recitare "read out, read aloud" (see recite). From 1640s as an adjective. The Italian form of the word was used in English from 1610s.ETD recitative (n.).2

    recital (n.)

    1510s, a legal term, "that part of a deed which contains a rehearsal or statement of relevant facts," from recite (v.) + -al (2). From 1560s as "that which is recited, a story." The meaning "act of reciting, a telling over, narration" is from 1610s; musical performance sense is from 1811 (especially one given by a single performer).ETD recital (n.).2

    recite (v.)

    early 15c., "state something" (in legal proceedings); mid-15c., "relate the facts or particulars of," from Old French reciter (12c.) and directly from Latin recitare "read aloud, read out, repeat from memory, declaim," from re- "back, again" (see re-) + citare "to summon" (see cite). Intransitive sense of "make a recitation, repeat something from memory" is by 1742. Related: Recited; reciting.ETD recite (v.).2

    reck (v.)

    Middle English recchen "to care, heed, have a mind, be concerned about" (later usually with of), from Old English reccan (2) "take care of, be interested in, care for; have regard to, take heed of; to care, heed; desire (to do something)" (strong verb, past tense rohte, past participle rought), from West Germanic *rokjan, from Proto-Germanic *rokja- (source also of Old Saxon rokjan, Middle Dutch roeken, Old Norse rækja "to care for," Old High German giruochan "to care for, have regard to," German geruhen "to deign," which is influenced by ruhen "to rest").ETD reck (v.).2

    This is reconstructed to be from PIE root *reg- "move in a straight line," with derivatives meaning "to direct in a straight line," thus "to lead, rule." The -k- sound is probably a northern influence from Norse. No known cognates outside Germanic. "From its earliest appearance in Eng., reck is almost exclusively employed in negative or interrogative clauses" [OED]. Related: Recked; recking. Also compare reckless.ETD reck (v.).3

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