verb (used with object)
Origin of hatchet
verb (used with object), bur·ied, bur·y·ing.
noun, plural bur·ies.
Origin of bury
Synonyms for bury
Antonyms for bury
verb buries, burying or buried (tr)
Word Origin for bury
Word Origin for hatchet
Old English byrgan "to raise a mound, hide, bury, inter," akin to beorgan "to shelter," from Proto-Germanic *burzjan- "protection, shelter" (cf. Old Saxon bergan, Dutch bergen, Old Norse bjarga, Swedish berga, Old High German bergan "protect, shelter, conceal," German bergen, Gothic bairgan "to save, preserve"), from PIE root *bhergh- "protect, preserve" (cf. Old Church Slavonic brego "I preserve, guard"). Related: Buried; burying. Burying-ground "cemetery" attested from 1711.
The Old English -y- was a short "oo" sound, like modern French -u-. Under normal circumstances it transformed into Modern English -i- (e.g. bridge, kiss, listen, sister), but in bury and a few other words (e.g. merry, knell) it retained a Kentish change to "e" that took place in the late Old English period. In the West Midlands, meanwhile, the Old English -y- sound persisted, slightly modified over time, giving the standard modern pronunciation of blush, much, church.
c.1300 "small ax" (mid-12c. in surnames), from Old French hachete, diminutive of hache "ax, battle-axe, pickaxe," possibly from Frankish *happja or some other Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *hæbijo (cf. Old High German happa "sickle, scythe"), from PIE root *kop- "to beat, strike" (cf. Greek kopis "knife;" Lithuanian kaplys "hatchet," kapoti "cut small;" Old Church Slavonic skopiti "castrate").
In Middle English, hatch itself was used in a sense "battle-axe." In 14c., hang up (one's) hatchet meant "stop what one is doing." Phrase bury the hatchet (1794) is from a supposed Native American peacemaking custom. Hatchet-man was originally California slang for "hired Chinese assassin" (1880), later extended figuratively to journalists who attacked the reputation of a public figure (1944).
bury the hatchet
To agree to end a quarrel: “Jerry and Cindy had been avoiding each other since the divorce, but I saw them together this morning, so they must have buried the hatchet.”
bury the hatchet
Make peace; settle one's differences. For example, Toward the end of the year, the roommates finally decided to bury the hatchet. Although some believe this term comes from a Native American custom for declaring peace between warring tribes, others say it comes from hang up one's hatchet, a term dating from the early 1300s (well before Columbus landed in the New World). The word bury replaced hang up in the 1700s.
In addition to the idioms beginning with hatchet
- hatchet job
- hatchet man
- bury the hatchet