"stone serving as a landmark," Old English mærstan "boundary stone," from mære "boundary, object indicating a boundary," from Proto-Germanic *mairjo- (cf. Middle Dutch mere "boundary mark, stake," Old Norse -mæri "boundary, border-land"), related to Latin murus "wall" (see mural). Hence also meresman "man appointed to find boundaries" (of a parish, etc.).

Nearby words

  1. merely,
  2. merengue,
  3. mereology,
  4. meres,
  5. merese,
  6. meretricious,
  7. merganser,
  8. merge,
  9. mergee,
  10. mergenthaler

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper