Walter William Skeat.

A concise etymological dictionary of the English language online

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Dan. verden (where -en is the article), Swed.
verld, G. welt, M. H. G. werlt, O. H. G.
weralt. p. The lit. sense is ' age of man '
or ' course of man's life/ hence a life-time,
course of life, experience of life, &c. The
component parts are A. S. wer (Icel. verr,
O. H. G. wer, Goth, wair), a man ; and
A. S. yldo (Icel. old, an age ; see Virile
and eld (under Old).

Worm. (E. ) M. E. worm. A. S. wyrm,
a worm, snake. +Du. worm, Icel. ormr,
Dan. Swed. orm, G. wurm, Goth, waurms ;
also L. uermis, a worm. Prob. allied also
to Skt. krimi, Lith. Hrmis, a worm, Irish
cruimh, a maggot; also to E. vermin,
carmine and crimson. See Curtius, ii. 173.

Wormwood, a bitter plant. (E.) A
corrupted form, the word having no real
reference either to worm or to wood.



M. E. wermode, later wormwod. A. S.
wermJd.+Du. wermoel, G. wermuth. p.
The lit. sense is ware-mood, i. e. preserver
of the mind, from a supposed belief in
its virtues; just as hellebore was called
wideberge, i.e. preservative against mad-
ness. From A. S. wer-ian, to defend;
m6d, mood, mind. See Wary and Mood

Worry, to harass. (E.) M. E. wirien,
worowen, orig. to strangle, and used of
the worrying of sheep by dogs or wolves.
A. S. wyrgan, only in comp. dwyrgan, to
harm. + Du. worgen, O. Fries, wergia,
wirgia, G. wiirgen, to strangle, suffocate.
Allied to A. S. wyrigan, to curse, M. E.
warien. p. Formed (by change of ea to y)
from the sb. appearing in A. S. wearg, an
outlaw, a wolf, Icel. vargr, an outlaw,
a wolf, an accursed person. Allied to
M. H. G. wergen, in comp. irwergen ( =
erwergen), a strong verb, to choke, throttle,
strangle. (V WARGH, to choke.)

Worse, comparative adj. and adv., more
bad. (E.) M. E. wurs, wers, adv., wurse,
werse, adj. ; A. S. wyrs, adv., wyrsa, adj.,
worse. + O. Sax. wirs, adv., wirsa, adj. ;
Icel. verr, adv., verri, adj. ; Dan. varre,
Swed. varre, adj.; M. H. G. wirs, adv.,
wirser, adj. ; Goth, waits, adv., wairsiza,
adj. p. The common Teut. type is WERS-
ISA, where -ISA is the comparative suffix,
and the base is WARS, to twist, entangle,
confuse ; cf. O. H. G. werran, G. wirren,
to twist, entangle ; see War. Worse does
duty for wors-er, and worst for wors-est.
Der. worse, sb., wors-en, vb.

worst, superlative. (E.) A.S. wyrst,
adv., wyrsta, contracted form of wyrsesta,
adj., which also occurs as wyrresta, Matt,
xii. 45. +0. Sax. wirsista, adj. ; Icel. verst,
adv., verstr, adj. ; Dan. varst, Swed. varst,
O. H. G. wirsist.

Worship; see Worth (1).

Worst; see Worse.

Worsted, twisted yarn. (E.) M. E.
worsted, Chaucer, C. T. 264. Named from
the town of Worsted, in Norfolk. Worsted
stands for Worth-stead; from Worth, an
estate, and stead, a place.

Wort (1), a plant. (E.) M.E. wort.
A. S. wyrt, a wort, plant, herb. + O. Sax.
wurt, Icel. urt,jurt, Dan. urt, Swed. brt,
G. wurz, Goth, waurts. Allied to L.
radix, Gk. fii*(=*F $*"?*)» ^-gweiddyn,
a root.
orchard. (E). M.E. orchard. A.S.

Digitized by CjOOQ IC



orceard, older forms ortgeard, wyrtgeard,
i. e. wort-yard ; compounded of wort and
yard, i. e. a herb-garden, which is the old
sense. + Dan. urtgaard, Swed. ortcg&rd,
Goth, aurtigards, a garden, similarly com-
pounded. See yard (i).

root (i), lowest part of a plant. (Scand.)
M. E. rote.— Icel. rot, Swed. rot, Dan. rod,
a root. Put for vr6t*=v6rt*, and allied
to Goth, waurts, a root, A. S. wyrt, a wort,
a root ; the initial v being dropped! as is
usual in Icelandic in the combination vr.
See below.

root (2), rout, vb., to grub up, as a
hog. (E.) A. S. wrdtan, to grub up;
whence prov. E. wrout, the same. + O. Du.
wroeten, the same ; Icel. rdta, to grub up,
from rdt, sb., a root From the sb. above.
So also Dan. rode, to root up, from rod, a

wort (a), an infusion of malt, new beer.
(E.) M.E. wort or worte. A.S. wyrte,
in the compound tnax-wyrte, lit. mash-
wort, an infusion of worts. — A. S. wyrt, a
wort; see Wort (i).+Icel. virtr, Norweg.
vyrt, vort, Swed. vbrt, G. bier-wuru, beer-

Wort (a) ; see above.

Worth (i), adj., deserving of ; sb., desert,
value. (E.) M.E. wurt h, worth. A.S. weorS,
wurfS, adj., honourable ; sb., value. + Du.
waard, adj., waarde, sb. ; Icel. vertir, adj.,
swS, sb. ; Dan. vard, adj. and sb. ; Swed.
vard, adj., varde, sb. ; G. werth, adj. and
sb. ; Goth, wairths, adj. and sb. 0. Teut.
type WERTHA, adj., valuable ; from
V WAR, to guard, keep. Allied to
Ware (i) and Wary. Der. worthy, adj.,
suggested by Icel. ver^Sugr, worthy ; worth"

worship, sb. (E.) Short for worthship.
A. S. weorfSscipe, wyftiscipe, honour.— A. S.
weorlS, wyr$, adj., honourable ; with suffix
•scipe (E. -ship), allied to E. shape. Der.
worship, verb.

Worth (a), to become, to be, to befall.
(E.) In phr. wo worth the day = vro be to
the day. M. E. worthen, to become. A. S.
weortian, to become, pt t. wear\ pi.
wurdon. + Du. worden, pt. t. werd; Icel.
vertSa, pt. t. varti ; Dan. vorde ; Swed.
varda; G. werden; Goth, wairthan, to
become, pt. t. warth. 0. All from Teut.
base WARTH, to become - V WART,
to turn; cf. L. uertere, to turn, uerti, to
turn to, become. See Verse.
weird, fate, destiny. (E.) Properly a


sb. ; also used as adj. M. E wirde, wyrde.
A. S. wyrd, wird, fate, destiny, one of the
Fates; lit. 'that which happens.' — A.S.
wurdon, pt. t. pi. of weoriSan, to becqme,
take place, happen (above). + Icel. urISr,
fate ; from urh-, stem of pt. t. pL of vertia.

Wot, I know, or he knows ,• see Wit (i).

Would; see Will (i).

Wound, a hurt. (E.) A.S. wund. +Du.
wond, wonde, Icel. und, Dan. vunde, G.
wunde, sb. We also find G. wund, Goth.
wunds, wounded, harmed ; from the pp. of
the strong verb which appears as A.S.
winnan (pp. wunnen), to fight, struggle,
win. See Win. (V WAN.) Der. wound,
verb, A. S. wundian.

Wrack, sea- weed, ruin ; see Wreak.

Wraith, an apparition. (Scand.) Lowl.
Sc wraith, Ayrshire warth, the supposed
apparition of one's guardian angel ; see
Jamieson. — Icel. vot%r (gen. varKar), a
guardian. — Icel. var%a, to guard ; see
Ward. Cf. Icel. vartia, vartSi, a beacon,
a pile of stones to warn a wayfarer,
Norweg. varde, a beacon, vardyvle ( = ward-
evil?), a guardian or attendant spirit, or

Wrangle; see Wring.

Wrap, to enfold. (E.) M. E. wrappen;
also spelt wlappen, whence Lap (3). Prov.
E. warp, to wrap up, also to weave;
clearly a derivative of Warp. Perhaps
due to the folding together of a fishing-
net ; cf. Icel. varp, the cast of a net, varpa,
a cast, also the net itself, sk&uarp, the
binding of a shoe, lit.' shoe- warp.' Doublet,
lap (3). Cf. en-velop, de-velop.

wrath ; see Writhe.

Wreak, to revenge. (E.) M. E. wreken.
A. S. wrecan, pt. wrac, pp. wrecen, to
wreak, revenge, punish, orig. to drive, urge,
impel. +Du. wreken ; Icel. reka, pt. t. rak,
to drive, thrust, repel, wreak ; G. rdchen,
to avenge ; Goth, wrikan, to persecute.
8. Allied to Lith. wargti, to suffer affliction,
Russ. vrag, a foe, persecutor; and to
Urge and Verge (2). (V WARG.)

rack (a), light vapoury clouds, mist
(Scand.) See Hamlet, ii. a. 506 ; Antony,
iv. 14. 10. M. E. rak. — Icel. rek, drift,
motion, a thing drifted ; cf. skyrek, the rack
or drifting clouds. — Icel. reka, to drive,
thrust, toss (above). Cf. Swed. skippet
vraker * the ship drifts.

rack (4), the same as wrack ; in the
phr. ' to go to rack and ruin ; ' see wrack

Digitized by CjOOQ IC


wrack, a kind of sea- weed ; shipwreck,
ruin. (E.) Lit. ' that which is cast ashore ; '
well shewn by mod. F. varech, (i) sea-
weed cast ashore, (2) pieces of a wrecked
ship cast ashore ; this F. word being bor-
rowed from English. M.E. wrak, a wreck ;
a peculiar use of A. S. wrac, exile, ex-
pulsion. — A. S. wrcec, pt. t. of wrecan, to
drive, urge, wreak ; see "Wreak (above). +
Du. wrak, sb., a wreck, adj., broken ; Icel.
rek, anything drifted ashore; Dan. vrag,
Swed. vrak, wreck, trash. Cf. Du. wraken,
Dan. vrage, to reject.

wreck, ruin, remains of what is wrecked.
(E.) • Formerly wrack ; the same as wrack

'wretch, a miserable creature. (E.)
Lit. • outcast.' M.E. wrecche. A.S. wrecca,
an outcast, an exile. -A. S. wrac, pt. t. of
wrecan, to drive, urge, hence to exile ; see
"Wreak (above). Cf. Lithuai. wargas,
misery. Der. wretched, i. e. made like a

Wreath; see Writhe.

Wren, a small bird. (E.) M. E. wrenne.
A. S. wrenna, wrSnna, a wren ; lit. • las-
civious bird.' — A. S. wr&ne, lascivious.
Allied to Dan. vrinsk, proud, Swed. vrensk,
not castrated (said of horses), M. H. G.
reinno, wrenno, a stallion, p. All from a
base WRIN, to neigh (as a horse), squeal
(as a pig) ; hence, to chirp (as a sparrow) ;
cf. Norweg. rina, to whine, squeal, Icel.
hrina (pt. t. hrein), to whine, squeal, &c,
applied to cocks, dogs, swine, horses, &c.
Hence Icel. rindill, a wren.

Wrench ; see Wring.

Wrest, Wrestle ; see Writhe.

Wretch; see Wreak.

Wretchlessness, the same as reckless-
ness ; see Reck.

Wriggle; see "Wring.

Wright ; see "Work.

Wring, to twist. (E.) M. E. wringen.
A. S. wringun, pt. t. wrang, pp. wrungen,
to press, compress, strain, wring. + Du.
wringen', G. ringen (pt. t. rang), to
wrestle, to wring, turn. Allied to Wry
and Wreak ; cf. L. uergere, to bend, Skt.
vtif, to bend.

rickets, a disease of children, ac-
companied by softness of the bones and
great weakness. (E.) A prov. E. word
first noticed about a.d. 1620; whence the
medical term rachitis was coined about
1650, with a punning allusion to Gk. fidx is >
the spine. Cf. prov. E. rickety, i.e. tottery,



weak, unstable. Formed from M.E. wrik-
ken, to twist, wrest, still in use in the
phrase 'to wrick one's ancle.' Allied to
A.S. wringan, to twist (above); and see
Wry (below). Cf. Du. wrikken, to be

rig (a), a frolic, prank. (E. ?) We also
find rig, to be wanton; riggish, wanton.
Put for wrig, and allied to wriggle-, see
Wriggle (below). Cf. Du. wrikken, to
stir to and fro, wriggelen, to wriggle ; and
see rickets (above).

wrangle, verb. (E.) M. E. wranglen,
to wrestle, also to dispute. Frequentative
of wring, formed from the A.S. pt. t.
wrang; see Wring (above). Thus the
sense was to keep on twisting or urging;
hence to wrestle or argue vehemently. Cf.
Dan. vringle, to twist, entangle. Der.
wrangle* sb. ; wrangler, a disputant in the
schools (at Cambridge), now applied to a
first-class-man in the mathematical tripos.

wrench, a twist, sprain. (E.) M. E.
wrenche, only in the metaphorical sense of
perversion, deceit. A. S. wrence, wrenc,
guile, fraud, orig. crookedness or per-
version, lit. 'a twist.' Allied to A. S.
wringan, to wring, twist ; see wrinkle
(below). Der. wrench, verb.

wriggle, vb. (E.) Frequentative of
wrig, to move about, Skelton, Elinour
Rumming, 1 76 ; which is a weakened form
of M. E. wrikken, to twist; we actually
find A. S. wrigian, but this passed into the
form wry. + Du. wriggelen, to wriggle,
frequent, of wrikken, to move or stir to
and fro; Dan. vrikke, to wriggle, Swed.
vricka, to turn to and fro. See rickets
(above), and wry (below).

wrinkle (1), a small ridge or uneven-
ness on a surface. (E.) M. E. wrinkel.
Evidently allied to A. S. wringan, to
twist. The lit. sense is 'a little twist,*
causing unevenness.+O Du. wrinckel, a
wrinkle, allied to wringen, to twist ; Dan.
ryhke, Swed. rynka, a wrinkle, forms due
to the pp of an old strong verb. Der.
wrinkle, vb.

wrinkle (2), a hint. (E.) Lit. 'a
small trick;' dimin. of A. S. wrenc, a
trick ; see wrench (above).

wrong, perverted, bad (E.) M. E.
wrong. A. S. wrong, a wrong, sb. ; ori;;.
an adj. — A. S. wrang, pt. t. of wringan, to
wring, wrest, pervert. +Du. wrang, acid,
sour (because acids wring the mouth);
Icel. rangr, awry, wrong; Dan. vrang,

Digitized by CjOOQ IC



Swed. vring, perverse. Der. wrong,

wry, twisted, turned aside. (E.) From
the M. E. wrien, verb, to twist, bend aside ;
A. S. wrigian, to drive, impel, incline to-
wards. Cf. Goth, wraikws, crooked, Skt.
vrij, to bend. See wriggle (above). Der.
Orwry, put for on wry, Barbour, Bruce,
4- 7o5.

Wrinkle, (1) and (a) ; see Wring.

Wrlat; see Writhe.

Write. (E.) The orig. sense was 'to
score/ i. e. to scratch the surface of wood
with a knife. M. E. writen, pt. t. wroot,
pp. writen (with short *)• A. S. writ an,
pt. t. wrdt, pp. writen.+O. Sax. writan,
to cut, write; Du. rijten, to tear; Icel.
rita, to scratch, write; Swed. rita, to
draw; G. reissen, to cut, tear. Allied to
Skt. vardh, to cut, vrana, a wound, vmcch,
to tear. (^WAR, to tear.) Der. writ,
sb., A. S. gewrit, from the pp. writen.

Writhe. (E.) M. E. writhm, pt t.
wroth, pp. writhm (with short i). A. S.
writian, pt. t. wrd$, pp. wriSen, to twist
about + Icel. rifte, Dan. vride, Swed. vrida,
to wring, twist, turn. Cf. Lat uertere, to
turn. (J WART, to turn.)

wrath, anger. (E.) M. E. wraththe.
0. Northumb. wr4«oV.-A. S. wrdti, adj.,
wroth; see wroth (below). + Icel. reifti,
Dan. Swed. vrede, sb., wrath; from Icel.
ro'uV, Dan. Swed. vred, adj., wroth.


wreath, a garland. (E.) M.E.wrethe.
A. S. wrckiS, a twisted band, bandage,
fillet. Formed (with vowel- change of d
to a)) from wrd$, pt. t. of written, to
writhe, twist Der. wreathe, verb.

wrest, to distort. (E.) M. E. wresten.
A. S. wr&stan, to twist forcibly. From
wr<kst, adj., firm, strong (orig. tightly
strung or twisted) ; which stands for
wr&Mst*, formed with the suffix -st (as
in blast) and vowel-change of d to a),
from wrdti, pt. t. of wrifSan, to twist.
Cf. Icel. reista, to wrest, Dan. vriste, to

wrestle. (E.) M. E. wrestlen. A. S.
wnkstlian, to wrestle; frequentative of
wr<kstan, to wrest, twist about ; see above.
+0. Du. wrastelen, worstelen, to struggle,

wrist. (E.) M. E. wrist, wirst. A. S.
wrist, also called handwrist, i.e. that
which turns the hand about Put for
wrift-st*, and formed (like wrest) with
suffix 'St from wri&en, pp. of written, to
writhe, twist about. + Low G. wrist ; Icel.
rist, instep, from riS-inn, pp. of ri$a, to
twist ; Dan. Swed. vrist, instep, from vride
or vrida, to twist ; G. rist, instep, wrist.

wroth, angry. (E.) A. S. wrdtS ; from
wrd<5, pt t. of written, to writhe.
Wrong, Wry; see Wring.
Wych-elm; see Wicker.
Wyvern, Wivern ; see Victuals.


Xebeo,a small three-masted vessel. (Span. I a kind of ship. Cf. Vers, sumbuk, Arab, sunt'
— Turk.) Span. xabegue. —Turk, sumbaki, \ bdk, a small boat, a pinnace. (Devic.)


Y- prefix. (E.) In y-clept, y-wis. M. E.
y-, i- ; A. S. ge-, a common prefix. This
prefix appears as e- in e-nough, and as a- in
a- ware. + Du. G. ge-, prefix ; Goth, ga-,
prefix. Cf. Gk. *y€, enclitic, Skt. ha, an
emphatic particle.

Yacht. (Du.) Du. jagt, O. Du. jacht,
a swift boat. Cf. DvL.jagten, O. Du.jaehten,
to speed, hunt ; Jacht, a hunting. — Du.
jagen, to hunt, chase. +G.Jagen, to hunt.
Perhaps allied to G. jdhe, quick, and to
Gay and Go.

Yam, a large esculent tuber. (Port.)
Port, inhame, a yam (Littre*). Remoter
origin unknown ; but not European*

Yankee, a citizen of New England, or
of the United States. (Scand.?) In use in
Boston, 1765. Dr. Wm. Gordon, in his
Hist, of the American War, ed. 1789, vol.
i. pp. 324, 325, says it was a favourite cant
word in Cambridge, Mass., as early as 1 713,
and that it meant 'excellent/ as *ayankee
good horse.' The word may have spread
from the students through New England,
and have thence obtained a wider currency.
It appears to be the same as Lowl. Sc.
yankie, a sharp, clever, forward woman;
cf. Lowl. Sc. yanker, an agile girl, an
incessant talker, a smart stroke, yank, a
jerk, smart blow, yanking, active (Jamie-

Digitized by CjOOQ IC


•on). We also find yank, to jerk, noted
by Buckland (Log of a Naturalist, 1876,
p. 130) as an American word. 0. Thus
yank-y is quick, spry, from yank, to jerk ;
and yank is a nasalised form of Lowl. Sc.
yack, to talk fast, yaike, a blow. Of Scand.
origin ; cf. Swed. dial, r'akka, to rove about,
Swed jaga, to hunt, Icel. jagu, to move about.
So also Du. G.jagen, to hunt. See Yacht.

Yap ; see Yelp.

Yard (1 ), an enclosed space. (E.) M. E.
yerd. A. S. geard, an enclosure, court. +
Icel. gar%r (whence E. garth), Dan. Du.
gaard, Swed. gdrd, G. garten, a garden ;
Russ. goroa", a town ; L. hortus, a garden-;
Gk. x^P TO h a court-yard. p. The Aryan
form is GHARTA, lit. 'a place sur-
rounded or enclosed.' (VGHAR, to
seize, enclose.) Allied to Gird (1).
Doublets, garden, garth. Der. court-
yard, orchard ( = wort-yard).

Yard (a), a rod, 36 inches, cross-bar on
a mast. (E.) M. E. $erde, yerde, a stick,
rod. A. S. gyrd, gierd, a rod.+Du. garde,
a twig, rod, G. gerte, a switch. Allied to
O. H. G. gart, lcel. gaddr, Goth, gazds, a

gird (a), to jest at, jibe. (E.) A pe-
culiar use of M. E. girden, to strike with a
rod, to pierce. From M. E. gerde 9 yerde,
a rod ; see yard (above). To gird at— to
strike at, jest at ; a gird is a cut, sarcasm ;
Tarn. Shrew, v. a. 48.

gride, to pierce, cut through. (E.)
See Spenser, F. Q. ii. 8. 36. A meta-
thesis of gird, M. E. girden, to strike,
pierce ; see gird (a) above.

jerk. (E.) Formerly *to lash.' Cot-
grave explains F. fouetter by * to scourge,
lash, yerk, or jerked We also find jert,
with file sense of gird or taunt. Cotgrave
explains attainte by ' a gentle nip, quip, or
jert, a sleight gird* The words jerk, jert,
gird appear to be all connected ; see gird
(a) above.

Yare, ready. (E.) M. E. \are, yare,
ready. A. S. gearu, gearo, ready, quick,
prompt. + Du.gaar, done, dressed (as meat) ;
Icel. gerr, perfect ; O. H. G. garo, ready ;
cf. G. gar, adv., wholly. Allied to Gear.

yarrow, the plant milfoil. (E.) M. E.
yarowe, yarwe. A. S. garuwc, gearuwe,
gearwe, yarrow. Lit. ' that which dresses,'
or puts in order, or cures; from the old
belief in its curative properties as a healer
of wounds. — A. S. gearwian, to make
ready (hence, to heal).— A. S. gearu, ready



(above). So also G. garbe, yarrow ; cf. G.
gerben, to dress leather.

Yarn. (E.) M. E.yarn. A. S. gearn,
thread. +Du. garen, Icel. Dan.. Swed. G.
gam. Allied to Gk. x°P^I* a cord, orig.
a string of gut; cf. Icel. garnir, guts.
See Cord, Chord.

Yarrow; see Yare.

Yaw, to go unsteadily, as a ship.
(Scand.) Norw. gaga, to bend back-
wards, esp. used of the neck of a bird ;
gag, adj., bent back, said of a knife not
set straight in the haft ; Icel. gagr, bent
back. Cf. Bavarian gagen, to move un-
steadily. Perhaps allied to Go; it seems
to be a reduplicated form.

Yawl (1), a small boat. (Du.) Du.
jol, a yawl, a Jutland boat+Dan. jolle,
Swed. julle, a yawl. Root unknown.

jolly-boat. (Scand. and E.) Here
jolly is a mere E. adaptation of Dan.
jolle, a yawl (above) ; the addition of boat
is needless.

Yawl (a), to howl ; see Yell.

Yawn, to gape. (E.) Formerly yane.
M. E. ganien, also gotten. A. S. gdnian,
to yawn. — A. S. gdn, pt. t. oiginan, strong
verb, to gape widely.+Icel. glna, to gape,
pt. t. gein ; cf. Gk. \axvtiv, to gape. Allied
to L. hiare, to gape, Gk. x^ ** * yawning
gulf; see Hiatus and Chaos. (VGHI.)

Ye. (E.) M. E. ye, ie, nom. ; your,
lour, gen. ; you, }ou t yow, dat. and aec.
pL A. S. ge, nom. ye ; efover, gen. of
you; edw, to you, you, dat. and acc.+
Du. gij, ye, u, you ; Icel. er, ier, ye, ytSar,
your, y$r, you ; Dan. Swed. i, ye, you ;
G. ihr; Goth, jus, ye, izwara, your, izwis,
you. p. The common Aryan base is YU ;
whence Iith. jus, ye ; Gk. it-peis, ye, Skt.
yti-yam, ye.

you. (E.) Properly the dat. and ace.
of ye ; see above.

your. (E.) M. E. your. A. S. eower,
your ; orig. gen. pi. of ge, ye ; see Ye
(above). Der. yours, M. E.youres, from
A. S. eSwres, gen. sing. masc. and neut. of
efrwer, your, possessive pronoun.

Yea, verily. (E.) This is the simple
affirmative; yes is a strengthened form,
often accompanied by an oath in our early
writers. M. E. ye. A. S. ged, yea.+Du.
Dan. Swed. G. ja, Icel. jd, Goth, ja, jai.
Allied to Goth, jah, A. S. ge, also, and ;
and to Skt. ya, Gk. 6t, who, which were
originally demonstrative pronouns. The
orig. sense was 'in that way,' just so.

Digitized by CjOOQ IC



yes. (£.) A strengthened form of yea.
M. E. yis, yus. A. S. gise, gese, yea.
Prob. short for ged sy y i. e. yea, let it be
so ; where ged, yea, is explained above, and
sy, let it be, is the imperative form from
the VAS, to be.

Yean, Ban, to bring forth young. (E.)
Here the prefixed y- answers to the A. S.
prefix ge». A. S. ednian, to ean ; ge-ednian,
to yean. We find ge-edne edwa » the ewes
great with young, Gen. xxxiii. 13. There
can be little doubt that ge-edne is here put
for ge-edcne *, i. e. pregnant ; where eacne
is pi. of edcen, pregnant, lit increased.
Allied to Eke (1). Thus to yean simply
means ' to be pregnant.' Der. yean-ling,
a new-born lamb.

Year. (E.) M. E. %eer, yeer, often
unaltered in the plural (hence * a two-year
old colt'). A. S. gedr, gSr, a year, pi.
gedr.+Du. jaar, Icel. dr, Dan. oar, Swed.
dr, G.j'ahr, Goth. jer. Further allied to
Gk. Stpos, a season, year, &pa, season, hour ;
Skt. ydtu, time. Lit. ' that which passes.'
(-^YA, to pass; from ^\, to go.)

yore, formerly. (E.) M.E. yore, A.S.
gedra, adv., formerly ; lit. * of years, during
years,' orig. gen. pi. of gedr, a year (above).

Yearn (1), to long for. (E.) M.E.
yernen. A. S. gyrnan, to yearn, be de-
sirous. — A. S. georn, adj., desirous (with
vowel-change of eo to y). +Icel. girna, to
desire, from gjarn, eager ; Goth, gaimjan,
to long for, from gairns, desirous. 0.
Again, the adj. is from the verb appearing
in O. H. G. geron, G. be-gehren % to long
for ; allied to Gk. x*ip*iv, to rejoice, yapa,
joy, Skt. hary, to desire. (VGHAR.)

Yearn (a), to grieve. (E.) Also spelt
earn, ern ; Hen. V., ii. 3. 3, ii. 3. 6 ; Jul.
Cses. ii. a. 139; Merry Wives, iii. 5. 45;
Rich. II. v. 5. 56 ; Hen. V. iv. 3. a6. A
corruption of yerm, erm, M. E. ermen, to
grieve (Chaucer, C.T. 13346); the prefixed
y- being due to A. S. prefix ge-, as in the
case oiyean. From A. S. yrman % to grieve,
also ge-yrman, to grieve, be miserable. —
A. S. earm, adj., poor, miserable, wretched
(with vowel-change from ea to y). Cf.
Du. arm, Icel. armr, Dan. Swed. G. arm,
Goth, arms, wretched.

Yeast. (E.} M. E. yeest, yest. A. S.
gist, gyst, yeast. +Du. gest. Icel. jast f jastr,
Swed. jast, Dan. giar, G. gascht, gischt.
All from the VYAS, to ferment, ap-
pearing in O. H. G. jesan, G. gdhren, to
ferment, Gk. (Utv, to boil, faros, fervent.


See Zeal. Der. yeast-y or yest-y, frothy,
Hamlet, v. 2. 199.

Yede, went. (E.) M.E. yede, $ede;
also code. A. S. ge-eode, also eode, went,
only in the pt. t. ; where eo- stands, by
rule, for original i . ( ^l, to go ; cf. Lat.
ire, to go.) So also Goth, i-ddja, went;
from the same root. % Not allied to go.

Yelk ; see Fellow.

Yell. (E.) M.E. ye/fen. A.S. gel/an,
gyllan, to cry out, resound. +Du. gillen,
Icel. gella, also gjalla (pt. t. gall), Dan.
gialle, gialde, Swed. galla, G. gellen, to
ring, resound. Allied to Icel. gala, pt t.
g6l, to sing, O. H. G. galan ; A. S. galan,
pt. t. gJl, whence E. nightin-gale,
(^ GHAR, to sound.)

yawl (2), to howl. (Scand.) Also^&,
yowl ( H alliwell). M . E. goulen, yiulen. -
Icel. gaula, Norw. gaula, to low, bellow,
roar. Allied to yell.

Yellow. (E.) M.E.yelwe,yelu. A.S.
geolo, geolu, yellow. + Du. geel, G. gelb.
Allied to L. heluus, light yellow, Gk. x*<fy>
young verdure of trees. Further allied to
Green, Gall (1).

yellow-hammer, yellow-ammer,
a song-bird. (E.) The h is an ignorant
insertion ; ammer answers to A. S. amore,
a small bird.+0. Du. emmerick, a yellow-
ammer, G. gelbammer, goldammer, yellow-
ammer or gold-ammer, emmerling, the
same. 0. The prob. sense is 'chirper;'
from a base AM, seen in Skt. am, to
sound, Icel. emja, to howl, G. jammer,

yolk, yelk, yellow part of an egg.
(E.) M. E. yolke, yelke. A. S. geoleca,
the yolk, lit. * yellow part.' — A. S. geolu,
yellow (above).

Yelp, to bark shrilly. (E.) M. E. yeU
pen, also to boast. A. S. gilpan, gielpan,
pt. t. gealp, pp. golpen, to boast, exult,
talk noisily. + Icel. gjdlpa, to yelp. Allied
to Yell.

yap, to yelp. (Scand.) The same as
yaup, Lowi. Sc. form of yelp. — Icel.
gjdlpa, to yelp (above); whence also F.

japper, to yap.

eoman. (E.) M. E. yoman, also
yeman. It appears to answer to an A. S.
gdman* (not found), with a variant g&-
man * ; these would become yoman, yeman

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