bankroll (n.) Look up bankroll at Dictionary.com
"roll of bank notes," 1887, from bank (n.1) + roll (n.). The verb is attested from 1928. Related: Bankrolled; bankrolling.
bankrupt (adj.) Look up bankrupt at Dictionary.com
1560s, from Italian banca rotta, literally "a broken bench," from banca "moneylender's shop," literally "bench" (see bank (n.1)) + rotta "broken, defeated, interrupted" from (and remodeled on) Latin rupta, fem. past participle of rumpere "to break" (see rupture (n.)). "[S]o called from the habit of breaking the bench of bankrupts" [Klein]. Earlier in English as a noun, "bankrupt person" (1530s).
bankrupt (v.) Look up bankrupt at Dictionary.com
1550s, from bankrupt (adj.). Related: Bankrupted; bankrupting.
bankruptcy (n.) Look up bankruptcy at Dictionary.com
1700, from bankrupt, "probably on the analogy of insolvency, but with -t erroneously retained in spelling, instead of being merged in the suffix ...." [OED]. Figurative use from 1761.
banlieue (n.) Look up banlieue at Dictionary.com
French, "suburbs, precincts," from Vulgar Latin *banleuca, from ban (see ban (n.1)) + leuca "a league (of distance)," in Medieval Latin, "indefinite extent of territory" (see league (n.2)). So, "the extent of a ban; the territory within which a ban is of force," hence, "territory subject to one jurisdiction."
bann (n.) Look up bann at Dictionary.com
in phrase banns of marriage (late 12c., spelling with double -n- attested from 1540s), from Old English bannan "to summon, command, proclaim" (see ban (v.)). Also probably partly from Old French ban "announcement, proclamation, banns, authorization," from Frankish *ban or some other Germanic cognate of the Old English word.
banner (n.) Look up banner at Dictionary.com
c. 1200, from Old French baniere (Modern French bannière) "flag, banner, standard," from Late Latin bandum "standard," borrowed from a West Germanic cognate of Gothic bandwa "a sign" (see band (n.2)). Figurative use from early 14c. Of newspaper headlines, from 1913.
banneret (n.) Look up banneret at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, an order of knighthood, originally in reference to one who could lead his men into battle under his own banner. Later it meant one who received rank for valiant deeds done in the king's presence in battle. Also "a small banner" (c. 1300).
bannock (n.) Look up bannock at Dictionary.com
"thick flat cake," Old English bannuc "a bit, small piece," from Gaelic bannach "a cake," perhaps a loan from Latin panicium, from panis "bread," from PIE root *pā- "to feed" (see food).
banns (n.) Look up banns at Dictionary.com
see bann.
banquet (n.) Look up banquet at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "feast, sumptuous entertainment," from French banquet (15c.; in Old French only "small bench"), from Old Italian banchetto, diminutive of banco "bench;" originally a snack eaten on a bench (rather than at table), hence "a slight repast between meals;" the meaning has entirely reversed. As a verb from 1510s.
banquette (n.) Look up banquette at Dictionary.com
1620s, "raised platform in a fortification," from French banquette (15c.), from Italian banchetta, diminutive of banca "bench, shelf" (see bank (n.1)).
banshee (n.) Look up banshee at Dictionary.com
1771, from phonetic spelling of Irish bean sidhe "female of the Elves," from bean "woman" (from PIE *gwen-; see queen) + sidhe, from sith "fairy" or sid "fairy mound." Specifically, one who calls to the spirits of the dead. Sidhe sometimes is confused with sithe, genitive of sith "peace."
bantam (n.) Look up bantam at Dictionary.com
1749, after Bantam, former Dutch residency in Java, from which the small domestic fowl were said to have been first imported. Extension to "small person" is 1837. As a light weight class in boxing, it is attested from 1884, probably from the birds, which are small but aggressive and bred for fighting.
banter (v.) Look up banter at Dictionary.com
1670s, origin uncertain; said by Swift to be a word from London street slang. Related: Bantered; bantering. The noun is from 1680s.
Banting (n.) Look up Banting at Dictionary.com
system for weight loss through diet control, named for William Banting (1797-1878), English undertaker who invented it, tested it himself, and promoted it in his 1863 booklet "Letter on Corpulence, Addressed to the Public." Although the word is a surname, it was used like a verbal noun in -ing. ("She is banting").
Bantu Look up Bantu at Dictionary.com
1862, applied to south African language group in the 1850s by German linguist Wilhelm Heinrich Immanuel Bleek (1827-1875), from native Ba-ntu "mankind," from ba-, plural prefix, + ntu "a man, person." Bantustan in a South African context is from 1949.
banyan (n.) Look up banyan at Dictionary.com
"Indian fig tree," 1630s, so called in reference to a tree on the Iranian coast of the Persian Gulf under which the Hindu merchants known as banians had built a pagoda. From Sanskrit vanija "merchant."
banzai Look up banzai at Dictionary.com
Japanese war-cry, 1893, literally "(may you live) ten thousand years," originally a greeting addressed to the emperor, from ban "ten thousand" + sai "year."
baobab (n.) Look up baobab at Dictionary.com
1630s, from Medieval Latin bahobab (1590s), apparently from a central African language.
baptise (v.) Look up baptise at Dictionary.com
chiefly British English spelling of baptize; for spelling, see -ize. Related: Baptised; baptising.
baptism (n.) Look up baptism at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, bapteme, from Old French batesme, bapteme (11c., Modern French baptême), from Latin baptismus, from Greek baptismos, noun of action from baptizein (see baptize). The -s- restored in later 14c.

Figurative sense is from late 14c. The Anglo-Saxons used fulluht in this sense (John the Baptist was Iohannes se Fulluhtere). Phrase baptism of fire "a soldier's first experience of battle" (1857) translates French baptême de feu; the phrase originally was ecclesiastical Greek baptisma pyros and meant "the grace of the Holy Spirit as imparted through baptism." Later it was used of martyrdom, especially by burning.
baptismal (adj.) Look up baptismal at Dictionary.com
1640s, from baptism + -al (1).
baptist (n.) Look up baptist at Dictionary.com
c. 1200, "one who baptizes;" see baptize + -ist. As "member of a Protestant sect that believes in adult baptism by immersion" (with capital B-), attested from 1654; their opponents called them anabaptists.
baptize (v.) Look up baptize at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, from Old French batisier (11c.), from Latin baptizare, from Greek baptizein "immerse, dip in water," also figuratively, "be over one's head" (in debt, etc.), "to be soaked (in wine);" in Greek Christian usage, "baptize;" from baptein "to dip, steep, dye, color," from PIE root *gwabh- "to dip, sink." Christian baptism originally consisted in full immersion. Related: Baptized; baptizing.
Baqubah Look up Baqubah at Dictionary.com
city in Iraq, from Arabic baya 'kuba "Jacob's house."
bar (n.1) Look up bar at Dictionary.com
late 12c., "stake or rod of iron used to fasten a door or gate," from Old French barre (12c.) "beam, bar, gate, barrier," from Vulgar Latin *barra "bar, barrier," which some suggest is from Gaulish *barros "the bushy end" [Gamillscheg], but OED regards this as "discredited" because it "in no way suits the sense." Of soap, by 1833; of candy, by 1906 (the process itself dates to the 1840s). Meaning "bank of sand across a harbor or river mouth" is from 1580s, probably so called because it was an obstruction to navigation. Bar graph is attested from 1925. Bar code first recorded 1963. Behind bars "in prison" is attested by 1934, U.S.
bar (n.2) Look up bar at Dictionary.com
"tavern," 1590s, so called in reference to the bars of the barrier or counter over which drinks or food were served to customers (see bar (n.1)).
bar (n.3) Look up bar at Dictionary.com
"whole body of lawyers, the legal profession," 1550s, a sense which derives ultimately from the railing that separated benchers from the hall in the Inns of Court. Students who had attained a certain standing were "called" to it to take part in the important exercises of the house. After c. 1600, however, this was popularly assumed to mean the bar in a courtroom, which was the wooden railing marking off the area around the judge's seat, where prisoners stood for arraignment and where a barrister (q.v.) stood to plead. As the place where the business of court was done, bar in this sense had become synonymous with "court" by early 14c.
bar (n.4) Look up bar at Dictionary.com
unit of pressure, coined 1903 from Greek baros "weight," related to barys "heavy," from PIE root *gwere- (2) "heavy" (see grave (adj.)).
bar (v.) Look up bar at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, "to fasten (a gate, etc.) with a bar," from bar (n.1); sense of "to obstruct, prevent" is recorded by 1570s. Expression bar none "without exception" is recorded from 1866.
Bar Mitzvah Look up Bar Mitzvah at Dictionary.com
1861, in Judaism, "male person who has completed his 13th year and thus reached the age of religious responsibility," from Hebrew, literally "son of command." As a name for the ceremony itself, by 1941.
Barabbas Look up Barabbas at Dictionary.com
biblical masc. proper name, Greek Barabbas, from Aramaic (Semitic) barabba, "son of the father," or "son of the master." In Hebrew, it would be ben abh.
barb (n.) Look up barb at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "barb of an arrow," from Old French barbe (11c.) "beard, beardlike appendage," from Latin barba "beard," perhaps cognate with Old English beard (see beard (n.)).
barb (v.) Look up barb at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "to clip, mow;" see barb (n.). Meaning "to fit or furnish with barbs" is from 1610s. Related: Barbed; barbing.
Barbados Look up Barbados at Dictionary.com
probably from Portuguese las barbados "the bearded;" the island so called because vines or moss hung densely from the trees. An inhabitant was called a Barbadian (1732).
Barbara Look up Barbara at Dictionary.com
fem. proper name, from Latin, fem. of barbarus "strange, foreign, barbarous," from Greek barbaros (see barbarian). For women, unlike men, the concept of "alien" presumably could be felt as "exotic" and thus make an appealing name. Popularized as a Christian name by the legend of Saint Barbara, early 4c. martyr, whose cult was popular from 7c. The common Middle English form was Barbary. A top 10 name in popularity for girls born in the U.S. between 1927 and 1958.
barbarian (adj.) Look up barbarian at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., from Medieval Latin barbarinus (source of Old French barbarin "Berber, pagan, Saracen, barbarian"), from Latin barbaria "foreign country," from Greek barbaros "foreign, strange, ignorant," from PIE root *barbar- echoic of unintelligible speech of foreigners (compare Sanskrit barbara- "stammering," also "non-Aryan," Latin balbus "stammering," Czech blblati "to stammer").

Greek barbaroi (n.) meant "all that are not Greek," but especially the Medes and Persians. Originally not entirely pejorative, its sense darkened after the Persian wars. The Romans (technically themselves barbaroi) took up the word and applied it to tribes or nations which had no Greek or Roman accomplishments. The noun is from late 14c., "person speaking a language different from one's own," also (c. 1400) "native of the Barbary coast;" meaning "rude, wild person" is from 1610s.
barbaric (adj.) Look up barbaric at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "uncultured, uncivilized, unpolished," from French barbarique (15c.), from Latin barbaricus "foreign, strange, outlandish," from Greek barbarikos "like a foreigner," from barbaros "foreign, rude" (see barbarian). Meaning "pertaining to barbarians" is from 1660s.
barbarism (n.) Look up barbarism at Dictionary.com
mid-15c., "uncivilized or rude nature," from French barbarisme (13c.), from Latin barbarismus, from Greek barbarismos "foreign speech," from barbarizein "to do as a foreigner does" (see barbarian). Only of speech in Greek, Latin, and French; sense extended in English to "uncivilized condition."
barbarity (n.) Look up barbarity at Dictionary.com
1560s, "want of civilization," from Latin barbarus (see barbarian) + -ity. Meaning "savage cruelty" is recorded from 1680s.
barbarous (adj.) Look up barbarous at Dictionary.com
c. 1400, "uncivilized, uncultured, ignorant," from Latin barbarus, from Greek barbaros (see barbarian). Meaning "not Greek or Latin" (of words or language) is from c. 1500; that of "savagely cruel" is from 1580s.
Barbary Look up Barbary at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, "foreign lands" (especially non-Christian lands), from Latin barbaria (see barbarian). Meaning "Saracens living in coastal North Africa" is attested from 1590s, via French (Old French barbarie), from Arabic Barbar, Berber, ancient Arabic name for the inhabitants of North Africa beyond Egypt. Perhaps a native name, perhaps an Arabic word, from barbara "to babble confusedly," but this might be ultimately from Greek barbaria. "The actual relations (if any) of the Arabic and Gr[eek] words cannot be settled; but in European langs. barbaria, Barbarie, Barbary, have from the first been treated as identical with L. barbaria, Byzantine Gr[eek] barbaria land of barbarians" [OED].
barbecue (n.) Look up barbecue at Dictionary.com
1650s, "framework for grilling meat, fish, etc.," from American Spanish barbacoa, from Arawakan (Haiti) barbakoa "framework of sticks," the raised wooden structure the Indians used to either sleep on or cure meat. Sense of "outdoor meal of roasted meat or fish as a social entertainment" is from 1733; modern popular noun sense of "grill for cooking over an open fire" is from 1931.
barbecue (v.) Look up barbecue at Dictionary.com
1660s, from barbecue (n.). Related: Barbecued; barbecuing.
barbed wire (n.) Look up barbed wire at Dictionary.com
also barb wire, "fencing wire with sharp edges or points," 1863, American English, from barb + wire (n.).
barbell (n.) Look up barbell at Dictionary.com
1887, from bar (n.1) + ending from dumbbell.
barber (n.) Look up barber at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, from Anglo-French barbour (attested as a surname from early 13c.), from Old French barbeor, barbieor (Modern French barbier, which has a more restricted sense than the English word), from Vulgar Latin *barbatorem, from Latin barba "beard" (see barb (n.)). Originally also regular practitioners of surgery, they were restricted to haircutting and dentistry under Henry VIII.
barber-shop (n.) Look up barber-shop at Dictionary.com
1570s, from barber + shop (n.). Earlier in same sense was barbery (c. 1500). Barber-shop in reference to close harmony male vocal quartets, it is attested from 1910; the custom of barber's keeping a musical instrument in their shops so waiting customers could entertain themselves is an old one, but the musical product had a low reputation and barber's music (c. 1660) was "wretched, poorly performed music."
barbican (n.) Look up barbican at Dictionary.com
"outer fortification of a city or castle," mid-13c., from Old French barbacane (12c.), a general Romanic word, perhaps ultimately from Arabic or Persian (compare bab-khanah "gate-house"). Watkins identifies it as from Old Iranian *pari-varaka "protective," from *wor-o-, suffixed variant form of PIE root *wer- (5) "to cover" (see wier).