boh (interj.) Look up boh at Dictionary.com
see boo.
Bohemia Look up Bohemia at Dictionary.com
central European kingdom, mid-15c., Beeme, from Middle French Boheme "Bohemia," from Latin Boiohaemum (Tacitus), from Boii, the Celtic people who settled in what is now Bohemia (and were driven from it by the Germanic Marcomans early 1c.; singular Boius, fem. Boia, perhaps literally "warriors") + Proto-Germanic *haimaz "home" (see home (n.)). Attested from 1861 in meaning "community of artists and social Bohemians" or in reference to the district where they live (see bohemian).
bohemian (n.) Look up bohemian at Dictionary.com
"a gypsy of society," 1848, from French bohemién (1550s), from the country name (see Bohemia). The modern sense is perhaps from the use of this country name since 15c. in French for "gypsy" (they were wrongly believed to have come from there, though their first appearance in Western Europe may have been directly from there), or from association with 15c. Bohemian heretics. It was popularized by Henri Murger's 1845 story collection "Scenes de la Vie de Boheme," the basis of Puccini's "La Bohème." Used in English 1848 in Thackary's "Vanity Fair."
The term 'Bohemian' has come to be very commonly accepted in our day as the description of a certain kind of literary gipsey, no matter in what language he speaks, or what city he inhabits .... A Bohemian is simply an artist or littérateur who, consciously or unconsciously, secedes from conventionality in life and in art. ["Westminster Review," 1862]
Bohunk (n.) Look up Bohunk at Dictionary.com
1903, U.S. derogatory slang for "lower class immigrant from Central or Eastern Europe," probably from Bohemian + a distortion of Hungarian.
boil (v.) Look up boil at Dictionary.com
early 13c., from Old French bolir "boil, bubble up, ferment, gush" (12c., Modern French bouillir), from Latin bullire "to bubble, seethe," from PIE base *beu- "to swell" (see bull (n.2)). The native word is seethe. Figurative sense of "to agitate the feelings" is from 1640s.
I am impatient, and my blood boyls high. [Thomas Otway, "Alcibiades," 1675]
Related: Boiled; boiling. Boiling point is recorded from 1773.
boil (n.) Look up boil at Dictionary.com
"hard tumor," altered from Middle English bile (Kentish bele), perhaps by association with the verb; from Old English byl, byle "boil, carbuncle," from West Germanic *buljon- "swelling" (source also of Old Frisian bele, Old High German bulia, German Beule). Perhaps ultimately from PIE root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell," or from *beu- "to grow, swell" (see bull (n.2); also compare boast (n.)). Compare Old Irish bolach "pustule," Gothic ufbauljan "to puff up," Icelandic beyla "hump."
boiler (n.) Look up boiler at Dictionary.com
1540s, agent noun from boil (v.). Meaning "vessel for boiling" is from 1725; steam engine sense is from 1757.
boilermaker (n.) Look up boilermaker at Dictionary.com
"a maker of boilers for engines," 1814, from boiler (n.) + maker. Meaning "shot of whiskey with a glass of beer" is short for boilermaker's delight (1910), strong cheap whiskey, so called in jest from the notion that it would clean the scales from the interior of a boiler.
boilerplate (n.) Look up boilerplate at Dictionary.com
newspaper (and now information technology) slang for "unit of writing that can be used over and over without change," 1893, from a literal meaning (1840) "metal rolled in large, flat plates for use in making steam boilers." The connecting notion is probably of sturdiness or reusability. From 1890s to 1950s, publicity items were cast or stamped in metal ready for the printing press and distributed to newspapers as filler. The largest supplier was Western Newspaper Union.
boink Look up boink at Dictionary.com
"have sex with" (v.); "the sex act" (n.), slang by c. 2000, perhaps an alteration of bonk in its popular sexual sense. Related: Boinked; boinking.
Boise Look up Boise at Dictionary.com
city in Idaho, U.S., from French-Canadian boisé, literally "wooded," from French bois "wood," which (with Italian bosco, Spanish bosque, Medieval Latin boscus) apparently is borrowed from the Germanic root of bush (n.). Medieval Latin boscus was used especially of "woodland pasture."
boisterous (adj.) Look up boisterous at Dictionary.com
late 15c., unexplained alteration of Middle English boistous (c. 1300) "rough, coarse (as of food), clumsy, violent," which is of unknown origin, perhaps from Anglo-French bustous "rough (road)," which is perhaps from Old French boisteos "curved, lame; uneven, rough" (Modern French boiteux), itself of obscure origin. Another guess traces it via Celtic to Latin bestia. Used of persons from 1560s. Related: Boisterously; boisterousness.
bok choy (n.) Look up bok choy at Dictionary.com
type of Chinese cabbage, from Cantonese, literally "white vegetable."
bold (adj.) Look up bold at Dictionary.com
Old English beald (West Saxon), bald (Anglian) "bold, brave, confident, strong," from Proto-Germanic *balthaz (source also of Old High German bald "bold, swift," in names such as Archibald, Leopold, Theobald; Gothic balþei "boldness;" Old Norse ballr "frightful, dangerous"), perhaps from PIE *bhol-to- suffixed form of root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell."

Of flavors (coffee, etc.) from 1829. The noun meaning "those who are bold" is from c. 1300. Old French and Provençal baut "bold," Italian baldo "bold, daring, fearless" are Germanic loan-words.
bold-face (n.) Look up bold-face at Dictionary.com
in typography, 1845, from bold (adj.) + face (n.). In reference to types, bold (adj.) is attested from 1790, perhaps from the secondary sense "easily visible, striking to the eye."
bole (n.) Look up bole at Dictionary.com
early 14c., from Old Norse bolr "tree trunk," from Proto-Germanic *bulas (source also of Middle Dutch bolle "trunk of a tree"), from PIE root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell."
bolero (n.) Look up bolero at Dictionary.com
kind of Spanish dance, 1787, from Spanish, probably from bola "ball" (and perhaps with reference to "whirling motion"), from Latin bulla (see bull (n.2)). In reference to a type of short jacket, it is recorded by 1864.
Bolivia Look up Bolivia at Dictionary.com
South American republic, founded 1825, named for Simon Bolivar (1783-1830), statesman and soldier.
boll (n.) Look up boll at Dictionary.com
Old English bolla "bowl, cup, pot," merged with Middle Dutch bolle "round object," borrowed 13c., both from Proto-Germanic *bul-, from PIE root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell." Influenced in meaning by Latin bulla "bubble, ball," ultimately from the same PIE root. Extended c. 1500 to "round seed pod of flax or cotton." Boll weevil is 1895, American English.
In south Texas, among Spanish-speaking people, the insect is generally known as the 'picudo,' a descriptive name which refers to the snout or beak of the insect. English-speaking planters generally referred to the insect at first as 'the sharpshooter,' a term which for many years has been applied to any insect which causes through its punctures the shedding of the squares or the rotting of the bolls. As there are several native insects that are commonly called sharpshooters and which, though injurious, are by no means to be compared with this insect, it becomes necessary to discourage in every way the use of the word sharpshooter as applied to this weevil. The adoption of the term 'Mexican cotton-boll weevil' for the new pest is recommended. [New Mexico College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin No. 19, April 1896]
A case of entomology meddling in etymology.
bollard (n.) Look up bollard at Dictionary.com
1844, originally a post for fixing mooring ropes; since 1948, usually a traffic control device; probably from bole + suffix -ard.
bollix (v.) Look up bollix at Dictionary.com
"bungle," respelling (perhaps euphemistic) of bollocks, plural of bollock "testicle," from Old English beallucas "testicles," from Proto-Germanic *ball-, from PIE root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell." Related: Bollixed; bollixing.
bollock (n.) Look up bollock at Dictionary.com
singular of bollocks (q.v.).
bollocks (n.) Look up bollocks at Dictionary.com
"testicles," 1744, see bollix. In British slang, as an ejaculation meaning "nonsense," recorded from 1919.
Bollywood Look up Bollywood at Dictionary.com
"film industry based in Mumbai, India," 1977, from Bombay (old name of Mumbai) + Hollywood.
Bolo (n.) Look up Bolo at Dictionary.com
"traitor," 1917, from Paul Bolo, French adventurer shot for treason April 17, 1918; used in World War I with reference to pacifist propagandists; later somewhat assimilated to Bolshevik (q.v.).
bologna (n.) Look up bologna at Dictionary.com
1850, variant of bologna sausage (1590s), named for the city in Italy, whose name is from Latin Bononia, which either represents Gaulish bona "foundation, fortress," or Boii, the name of the Gaulish people who occupied the region 4c. B.C.E. Also see baloney.
Bolognese (adj.) Look up Bolognese at Dictionary.com
1756, pertaining to Bologna (q.v.).
boloney (n.) Look up boloney at Dictionary.com
see baloney.
Bolshevik (n.) Look up Bolshevik at Dictionary.com
1917, from Russian bol'shiy "greater," comparative of adjective bol'shoy "big, great" (as in Bolshoi Ballet), from Old Church Slavonic boljiji "larger," from PIE root *bel- "strong" (source also of Sanskrit balam "strength, force," Greek beltion "better," Phrygian balaios "big, fast," Old Irish odbal "strong," Welsh balch "proud;" Middle Dutch, Low German, Frisian pal "strong, firm").

It was the faction of the Russian Social Democratic Worker's Party after a split in 1903 that was either larger or more extreme (or both) than the Mensheviks (from Russian men'shij "less"); after they seized power in 1917, applied generally to Russian communists. Bolshevism is recorded from 1917.
bolster (v.) Look up bolster at Dictionary.com
mid-15c. (implied in bolstered), "propped up, made to bulge" (originally of a woman's breasts), from bolster (n.). Figurative sense is from c. 1500, on the notion of "to support with a bolster, prop up." Related: Bolstering.
bolster (n.) Look up bolster at Dictionary.com
Old English bolster "bolster, cushion, something stuffed so that it swells up," especially "long, stuffed pillow," from Proto-Germanic *bolkhstraz (source also of Old Norse bolstr, Danish, Swedish, Dutch bolster, German polster), from PIE *bhelgh- "to swell," extended form of root *bhel- (2) "to blow, swell."
bolt (n.) Look up bolt at Dictionary.com
Old English bolt "short, stout arrow with a heavy head;" also "crossbow for throwing bolts," from Proto-Germanic *bultas (source also of Old Norse bolti, Danish bolt, Dutch bout, German Bolzen), perhaps from PIE root *bheld- "to knock, strike" (source also of Lithuanian beldu "I knock," baldas "pole for striking").

Applied since Middle English to other short metal rods (especially those with knobbed ends). From the notion of an arrow's flight comes the lightning bolt (1530s). A bolt of canvas (c. 1400) was so called for its shape. Adverbial phrase bolt upright is from late 14c.
bolt (v.) Look up bolt at Dictionary.com
from bolt (n.) in its various senses; from a crossbow arrow's quick flight comes the meaning "to spring, to make a quick start" (early 13c.). Via the notion of runaway horses, this came to mean "to leave suddenly" (early 19c.). Meaning "to gulp down food" is from 1794. The meaning "to secure by means of a bolt" is from 1580s. Related: Bolted; bolting.
bomb (v.) Look up bomb at Dictionary.com
1680s, from bomb (n.). Meaning "to fail" attested from 1963. Related: Bombed; bombing. Slang bombed "drunk" is attested by 1956.
bomb (n.) Look up bomb at Dictionary.com
1580s, from French bombe, from Italian bomba, probably from Latin bombus "a deep, hollow noise; a buzzing or booming sound," from Greek bombos "deep and hollow sound," echoic. Originally of mortar shells, etc.; modern sense of "explosive device placed by hand or dropped from airplane" is 1909. Meaning "old car" is from 1953. Meaning "success" is from 1954 (late 1990s slang the bomb "the best" is probably a fresh formation); opposite sense of "a failure" is from 1963. The bomb "atomic bomb" is from 1945.
bombard (v.) Look up bombard at Dictionary.com
1590s, from French bombarder, from bombarde "mortar, catapult" (see bombard (n.)). Figurative sense by 1765. Related: Bombarded; bombarding.
bombard (n.) Look up bombard at Dictionary.com
early 15c., "catapult, military engine for throwing large stones," from Middle French bombarde "mortar, catapult" (14c.), from bombe (see bomb (n.)). The same word, from the same source, was used in English and French late 14c. in reference to the bass shawm, a bassoon-like musical instrument, preserving the "buzzing" sense in the Latin.
bombardier (n.) Look up bombardier at Dictionary.com
1550s, soldier with a bombard, from French bombardier, from bombard (see bombard (n.)). In 17c.-18c. of soldiers who manned artillery (especially mortars and howitzers); meaning "one who aims the bombs in an aircraft" is attested 1932, American English.
bombast (n.) Look up bombast at Dictionary.com
1560s, "cotton padding," corrupted from earlier bombace (1550s), from Old French bombace "cotton, cotton wadding," from Late Latin bombacem, accusative of bombax "cotton, 'linteorum aut aliae quaevis quisquiliae,' " a corruption and transferred use of Latin bombyx "silk," from Greek bombyx "silk, silkworm" (which also came to mean "cotton" in Medieval Greek), from some oriental word, perhaps related to Iranian pambak (modern panba) or Armenian bambok, perhaps ultimately from a PIE root meaning "to twist, wind." From stuffing and padding for clothes or upholstery, meaning extended to "pompous, empty speech" (1580s).

Also from the same source are Swedish bomull, Danish bomuld "cotton," and, via Turkish forms, Modern Greek mpampaki, Rumanian bumbac, Serbo-Croatian pamuk. German baumwolle "cotton" is probably from the Latin word but altered by folk-etymology to look like "tree wool." Polish bawełna, Lithuanian bovelna are partial translations from German.
bombastic (adj.) Look up bombastic at Dictionary.com
1704, "inflated," from bombast + -ic. Meaning "given to bombastic language" is from 1727.
Bombay Look up Bombay at Dictionary.com
city in western India, from Portuguese, and popularly explained as Portuguese bom bahia "good bay," but that seems folk etymology (for one, the adjective is masculine and the noun is feminine), and the more likely candidate is the local Mumbadevi "Goddess Mumba," a Hindu deity worshipped there. The city's name officially changed to Mumbai in 1995.
bombazine (n.) Look up bombazine at Dictionary.com
(also bombasine, bambazine), 1550s, from French bombasin (14c.) "cotton cloth," from Medieval Latin bombacinium "silk texture," from Late Latin bombycinium, neuter of bombycinius "silken," from bombyx "silk, silkworm," from Greek bombyx. The post-classical transfer of the word from "silk" to "cotton" may reflect the perceived "silk-like" nature of the fabric, or a waning of familiarity with genuine silk in the European Dark Ages, but compare bombast.
bomber (n.) Look up bomber at Dictionary.com
"one who throws bombs," 1915, agent noun from bomb (v.). As a type of military aircraft, from 1917.
bombinate (v.) Look up bombinate at Dictionary.com
"make a buzzing noise," 1865, from Latin bombinare, corrupted from bombitare "to hum, buzz," from bombus "a deep, hollow sound; hum, buzz," echoic. Related: Bombinated; bombinating.
bombination (n.) Look up bombination at Dictionary.com
1816; see bombinate + -ion.
bombshell (n.) Look up bombshell at Dictionary.com
1708, from bomb (n.) + shell (n.). The figurative sense of "shattering or devastating thing or event" attested from 1860. In reference to a pretty woman (especially a blonde) it is attested from 1942 ("Bombshell" as title of a movie starring blond U.S. actress Jean Harlow (1911-1937) is from 1933).
bon (adj.) Look up bon at Dictionary.com
French, literally "good" (adj.), from Latin bonus "good" (see bonus). It has crossed the Channel in phrases such as bon appétit (1860), literally "good appetite;" bon-ton (1744) "good style;" bon mot.
bon mot (n.) Look up bon mot at Dictionary.com
1735, French, "good saying, " literally "good word," from bon "good" + mot (12c.), from Vulgar Latin muttum, from Latin muttire "to mutter, mumble, murmur" (see mutter).
bon vivant (n.) Look up bon vivant at Dictionary.com
also bon-vivant, "one fond of good living," 1690s, French (see bon); the fem. is bonne vivante.
bon voyage Look up bon voyage at Dictionary.com
1670s, French, "pleasant journey," from bon "good," (see bon) + voyage (see voyage (n.)).