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Origin of student
pronunciation note for student
OTHER WORDS FROM studentstu·dent·less, adjectivestu·dent·like, adjectivean·ti·stu·dent, noun, adjectivenon·stu·dent, noun
Words nearby student
BEHIND THE WORD
Where does student come from?
The word student entered English around 1350–1400. It ultimately derives from the Latin studēre. The meaning of this verb is one we think will resonate with a lot of actual students out there: “to take pains.” No, we’re not making this up: a student, etymologically speaking, can be understood a “pains-taker”!
In Latin, studēre had many other senses, though, and ones that some students may have a harder time relating to. Studēre could also mean “to desire, be eager for, be enthusiastic about, busy oneself with, apply oneself to, be diligent, pursue, study.” The underlying idea of student, then, is about striving—for new knowledge and abilities. It’s about that mix of hard work and passion. Isn’t that inspirational?
We don’t think you have to be a student of etymology to make the connection between student and study. Like student, the verb study also comes from the Latin studēre. The noun study—as in The scientists conducted a sleep study or Her favorite room of her house is the study—is also related to studēre and is more immediately derived from the Latin noun studium, meaning “zeal, inclination,” among other senses.
But not all connections between words are so obvious. Consider student and tweezers. Would you have guessed this unlikely pair of words share a common root? Let’s, um, pick this apart.
Tweezers are small pincers or nippers for plucking our hairs, extracting splinters, picking up small objects, and so forth. The word entered English in the mid-1600s, based on tweeze, an obsolete noun meaning “case of surgical instruments,” which contained what we now call tweezers.
Losing its initial E along the way, tweeze comes from etweese, which is an English rendering of the French etui, a type of small case used to hold needles, cosmetic instruments, and the like. Etui can ultimately be traced back to the Latin stūdiāre, “to treat with care,” related to the same studēre. This is how student is related to, of all things, tweezers.
Example sentences from the Web for student
According to the USDA, student participation began to fall, with 1.4 million students opting out of the lunch program entirely.
This was also the year Duke University student Belle Knox put college girls on the map.Porn Stars on the Year in Porn: Drone Erotica, Belle Knox, and Wild Sex|Aurora Snow|December 27, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The congressman traces his belief in Santa Claus back 40 years, when he was a student going to college “on the GI Bill.”Kerry Bentivolio: The Congressman Who Believes in Santa Claus|Ben Jacobs|December 24, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Dean Todd arranged for me to sit behind a screen and talk about my rape for a group of student leaders and activists.
She arranged for me to meet a student journalist, so that I could tell one of the student newspapers my story.
But as his father was speaking again the student turned his serious face toward the pulpit.Tess of the Storm Country|Grace Miller White
I was already marked out for the life of a student, yet little that was in the books I read seemed to find its way into my mind.'Critical Miscellanies (Vol. 3 of 3)|John Morley
However, he found not a little comfort for his failure as a student in his popularity as a storyteller and kind-hearted comrade.Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 6|Charles H. Sylvester
The student should see that this is a sure foundation and not a tottering, shaky structure.Illumination and its Development in the Present Day|Sidney Farnsworth
Just a German boy we learned to know in Berlin, and now a student at Harvard.The Wide Awake Girls in Winsted|Katharine Ellis Barrett
British Dictionary definitions for student
- a person following a course of study, as in a school, college, university, etc
- (as modifier)student teacher