- the derivation of a word.
- a chronological account of the birth and development of a particular word or element of a word, often delineating its spread from one language to another and its evolving changes in form and meaning.
- the study of historical linguistic change, especially as manifested in individual words.
Origin of etymology
Examples from the Web for etymology
The Daily Beast reached out to Eschliman to ask about the definition and etymology of the term "Gaystapo."Fringe Factor: 'Gaystapo' Claims Its Latest 'Victim'
July 26, 2014
Its origins and etymology are veiled in mystery: cha is Chinese for “tea,” but debates rage over those first two syllables.Is Celebrity Favorite Kombucha Really a Health and Anti-Aging Cure?
February 28, 2012
Since etymology is epicentral to politics, the new titles that the Republican and Democratic parties choose must be right.America's Political Parties Need New Names
September 30, 2010
Cat language has been reduced to etymology in several tongues.Concerning Cats
Helen M. Winslow
Why does the meaning of words depart so widely from their etymology?Cratylus
The etymology of the euphonious word "Lobskous" I am unable to give.War from the Inside
Frederick L. (Frederick Lyman) Hitchcock
I say, what 's the derivation of your cockie-leekie,—the etymology of the phrase?Roland Cashel
Charles James Lever
I refer not merely, of course, to its etymology, but rather to its spiritual import.Socialism
- the study of the sources and development of words and morphemes
- an account of the source and development of a word or morpheme
Word Origin and History for etymology
late 14c., ethimolegia "facts of the origin and development of a word," from Old French et(h)imologie (14c., Modern French étymologie), from Latin etymologia, from Greek etymologia, properly "study of the true sense (of a word)," from etymon "true sense" (neuter of etymos "true, real, actual," related to eteos "true") + -logia "study of, a speaking of" (see -logy).
In classical times, of meanings; later, of histories. Latinized by Cicero as veriloquium. As a branch of linguistic science, from 1640s. Related: Etymological; etymologically.