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OTHER WORDS FROM annoying
Words nearby annoying
Definition for annoying (2 of 2)
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
Origin of annoy
OTHER WORDS FROM annoyan·noy·er, nounhalf-an·noyed, adjectiveun·an·noyed, adjective
BEHIND THE WORD
Where does annoying come from?
When something is annoying, it is irritating, bothersome, vexing, exasperating, or any of the many other English words describing things that cause annoyance. But would you call that same thing odious, that is, “hateful” or “disgusting”? Calling something that is merely annoying odious might be a little extreme, but etymologically speaking, it’s no stretch.
The adjective annoying, recorded in English around 1325–75, is based on the even older verb annoy. (See our entry at -ing for the nitty-gritty on that word element.) Annoy entered English around 1250–1300, borrowed from the French anoier, among other forms, and meaning “to molest, harm, tire.” This French verb is derived from the Late Latin inodiāre, “to cause aversion.”
The Latin verb inodiāre developed from the expression mihi in odiō est, meaning “I dislike.” A literal translation of this expression is “it is in hatred to me,” with in odiō meaning “in hatred.” Odiō is a form of odium, a word directly borrowed into English and meaning “dislike, aversion, hatred,” among other senses. An adjective form of odium in Latin was odiōsus, source of the English odious. And that’s how annoying is connected to odious.
Another word related to annoying is noisome. Noisome is a tricky word because it looks similar to noisy, but the two do not share a common origin. Noisome means “offensive or disgusting, as an odor” or “harmful or injurious to health; noxious.”
Found in English around 1350–1400, noisome is based on the Middle English noy, a variant of annoy. The second part of the word, –some, was once a very productive English suffix used to form adjectives, as in one of the synonyms for annoying we noted above: bothersome. Can you think of other words that feature the suffix –some?
Did you know ... ?
Have ever been so bored that it downright annoyed you? You may have experienced ennui. While feeling ennui is no fun, ennui is a great word—and, as we trust you already know, learning new words is a great way to cure ennui.
Ennui means “a feeling of utter weariness and discontent resulting from satiety or lack of interest”—or more generally, “boredom.” Ennui was borrowed directly into English from French, in turn from the same Latin roots as annoy.
Example sentences from the Web for annoying
The ACLU and its allies are trying to undermine the holiday with lawsuits and annoying billboards.
Sanger felt, to the contrary, that it was the nonacademic masses who tended to be annoying.
She is even, it has been deemed, “annoying on Instagram,” that most contemporary of heinous crimes.
It was audacious and global in scope, yet annoying for being unavoidable.U2 Generously Gives Us a Lousy Album, Sucks at the Corporate Teat|Hampton Stevens|September 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
But yeah, the people who went, “Ugh, how annoying,” probably forgot about it five seconds later.Anna Kendrick on ‘Pitch Perfect 2,’ Drunken Horror Stories, and Singin’ Pharrell|Marlow Stern|July 24, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Tushin wondered anxiously whether he had kept his promise, whether he was annoying Vera in any way.The Precipice|Ivan Goncharov
Of course all these things are trifles, but they are annoying and useless.A History of the French Novel, Vol. 2|George Saintsbury
The prevalence of paper circulation was felt in the most annoying manner.Readings in Money and Banking|Chester Arthur Phillips
Yet you insist on sitting on that bench and annoying me with your 216 unwelcome presence.Glinda of Oz|L. Frank Baum
By this time the party had come within a few feet of where Marjorie and her annoying freshman find were standing.Marjorie Dean, College Sophomore|Pauline Lester