- a group or member of a group that is perceived as different, foreign, strange, etc.: Prejudice comes from fear of the other.
- a person or thing that is the counterpart of someone or something else: the role of the Other in the development of self.
verb (used with object)
- other day, the,
- other fish to fry,
- other good fish in the sea,
- other half,
- other man
Origin of other
- (when used before a singular noun, usually preceded by the) the remaining (one or ones in a group of which one or some have been specified)I'll read the other sections of the paper later
- the other (as pronoun; functioning as sing)one walks while the other rides
- apart from; besidesa lady other than his wife
- different fromhe couldn't be other than what he is Archaic form: other from
Word Origin for other
Old English oþer "the second" (adj.), also as a pronoun, "one of the two, other," from Proto-Germanic *antharaz (cf. Old Saxon athar, Old Frisian other, Old Norse annarr, Middle Dutch and Dutch ander, Old High German andar, German ander, Gothic anþar "other").
These are from PIE *an-tero-, variant of *al-tero- "the other of two" (cf. Lithuanian antras, Sanskrit antarah "other, foreign," Latin alter), from root *al- "beyond" (see alias) + adjectival comparative suffix *-tero-. The Old English, Old Saxon, and Old Frisian forms show "a normal loss of n before fricatives" [Barnhart]. Meaning "different" is mid-13c.
Sense of "second" was detached from this word in English (which uses second, from Latin) and German (zweiter, from zwei "two") to avoid ambiguity. In Scandinavian, however, the second floor is still the "other" floor (e.g. Swedish andra, Danish anden). Also cf. Old English oþergeara "next year."
The other woman "a woman with whom a man begins a love affair while he is already committed" is from 1855. The other day originally (mid-12c.) was "the next day;" later (c.1300) "yesterday;" and now, loosely, "a day or two ago" (early 15c.). Phrase other half in reference to either the poor or the rich, is recorded from c.1600.
La moitié du monde ne sçayt comment l'aultre vit. [Rabelais, "Pantagruel," 1532]
In addition to the idioms beginning with other
- other day, the
- other fish to fry
- other good fish in the sea
- other side of the coin
- other side of the tracks
- other than
- other things being equal
- other way round, the
- at each other's throats
- do unto others
- each other
- every other
- in one ear and out the other
- in someone's pocket (live in each other's pockets)
- in other words
- laugh out of the other side of one's mouth
- look the other way
- made for (each other)
- none other than
- on the one (the other) hand
- or other
- right (other) side of the tracks
- shoe is on the other foot
- six of one, half a dozen of the other
- the other day
- this and that (and the other)
- turn the other cheek
- wait for the other shoe to drop