cushion (v.) Look up cushion at Dictionary.com
1730s, from cushion (n.). In the figurative sense, from 1863. Related: Cushioned; cushioning.
cushy (adj.) Look up cushy at Dictionary.com
"easy," 1915, Anglo-Indian slang, from Hindi khush "pleasant, healthy, happy" + -y (2).
cusp (n.) Look up cusp at Dictionary.com
1580s, from Latin cuspis "point, spear, pointed end, head," of unknown origin. Astrological use is earliest.
cuspid (n.) Look up cuspid at Dictionary.com
1743, from Latin cuspis (genitive cuspidus) "point, pointed end" (see cusp). Of teeth, from 1878. Related: Cuspidate (adj.), attested from 1690s.
cuspidor (n.) Look up cuspidor at Dictionary.com
1779, a colonial word, from Portuguese cuspidor "spittoon," from cuspir "to spit," from Latin conspuere "spit on," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + spuere "to spit" (see spew (v.)).
cuss (n.) Look up cuss at Dictionary.com
1775, American English dialectal, "troublesome person or animal," an alteration of curse (n.), or else a shortening of the slang sense of customer.
cuss (v.) Look up cuss at Dictionary.com
"to say bad words," 1815, alteration of curse (v.). Related: Cussed; cussing. To cuss out attested by 1881.
custard (n.) Look up custard at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., "meat or fruit pie," crustade, from Middle French croustade (Modern French coutarde), from Old Provençal croustado "fruit tart," literally "something covered with crust," from crosta "crust," from Latin crusta (see crust (n.)). Modern meaning is c.1600. Spelling change perhaps by influence of mustard.
custodial (adj.) Look up custodial at Dictionary.com
1772, from custody (Latin custodia) + -al (1).
custodian (n.) Look up custodian at Dictionary.com
1781, from custody (Latin custodia) + -an. As "janitor," by 1944, American English, short for custodian-janitor (by 1899).
custody (n.) Look up custody at Dictionary.com
mid-15c., from Latin custodia "guarding, watching, keeping," from custos (genitive custodis) "guardian, keeper, protector," from PIE *(s)keu- "to cover, conceal" (see hide (n.1)).
custom (n.) Look up custom at Dictionary.com
c.1200, "habitual practice," from Old French costume "custom, habit, practice; clothes, dress" (12c., Modern French coutume), from Vulgar Latin *consuetumen, from Latin consuetudinem (nominative consuetudo) "habit, usage, way, practice, tradition, familiarity," from consuetus, past participle of consuescere "accustom," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + suescere "become used to, accustom oneself," related to sui, genitive of suus "oneself," from PIE *swe- "oneself" (see idiom). Replaced Old English þeaw. Sense of a "regular" toll or tax on goods is early 14c. The native word here is toll.
custom (adj.) Look up custom at Dictionary.com
"made to measure or order," c.1830, from custom (n.).
customary (adj.) Look up customary at Dictionary.com
1520s, from Medieval Latin custumarius, from Latin consuetudinarius, from consuetitudinem (see custom (n.)). Related: Customarily.
customer (n.) Look up customer at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "customs official;" later "buyer" (early 15c.), from Anglo-French custumer, from Medieval Latin custumarius, from Latin consuetudinarius (see custom (n.)). More generalized meaning "a person with whom one has dealings" emerged 1540s; that of "a person to deal with" (usually wth an adjective, tough, etc.) is by 1580s. In Shakespeare, the word also can mean "prostitute."
customise (v.) Look up customise at Dictionary.com
chiefly British English spelling of customize (q.v.); for spelling, see -ize.
customize (v.) Look up customize at Dictionary.com
1934, "to make (something) to a customer's specifications," American English, from custom (adj.) + -ize. Related: Customizable; customization; customized; customizing.
cut (v.) Look up cut at Dictionary.com
late 13c., possibly Scandinavian, from North Germanic *kut- (cognates: Swedish dialectal kuta "to cut," kuta "knife," Old Norse kuti "knife"), or from Old French couteau "knife." Replaced Old English ceorfan (see carve (v.)), sniþan, and scieran (see shear). Meaning "to be absent without excuse" is British university slang from 1794. To cut a pack of cards is from 1590s. Related: Cutting.
cut (n.) Look up cut at Dictionary.com
1520s, "gash, incision," from cut (v.); meaning "piece cut off" is from 1590s; sense of "a wounding sarcasm" is from 1560s.
cutaneous (adj.) Look up cutaneous at Dictionary.com
1570s, from Medieval Latin cutaneus, from Latin cutis "the skin" (see cuticle).
cute (adj.) Look up cute at Dictionary.com
1731, "clever," shortening of acute; informal sense of "pretty" is 1834, American English student slang. Related: Cuteness.
cutesy (adj.) Look up cutesy at Dictionary.com
"artificially or annoyingly cute," by 1968, from cute (adj.).
cutey (n.) Look up cutey at Dictionary.com
alternative spelling of cutie.
cuticle (n.) Look up cuticle at Dictionary.com
1610s, from Latin cuticula, diminutive of cutis "skin," from PIE *ku-ti-, from root *(s)keu- "to cover, conceal" (cognates: Lithuanian kiautas "husk," Old English hyd "skin, hide;" see hide (n.1)). Specialized sense of "skin at the base of the nail" is from 1907. Related: Cuticular.
cutie (n.) Look up cutie at Dictionary.com
"cute person," originally especially "attractive young woman," 1917, from diminutive of cute.
cutlass (n.) Look up cutlass at Dictionary.com
1590s, from Middle French coutelas (16c.), probably from Italian coltellaccio "large knife" (with augmentative suffix -accio), from coltello "knife," from Latin cultellus "small knife," diminutive of culter "knife, plowshare," from PIE *kel-tro-, from root *(s)kel- "to cut" (see scale (n.1)).
cutler (n.) Look up cutler at Dictionary.com
c.1400, from Old French coutelier (12c., Modern French coutelier) "knife-maker," from Latin cultellarius, from cultellus "knife" (see cutlass).
cutlery (n.) Look up cutlery at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., from Old French coutelerie (13c., Modern French coutellerie) "cutting utensils," also "knife-making," from coutel "knife," from Latin cultellus (see cutlass).
cutlet (n.) Look up cutlet at Dictionary.com
1706, from French côtelette, from Old French costelette "little rib" (14c.), a double diminutive of coste "rib, side," from Latin costa (see coast (n.)); influenced by English cut.
cutoff (n.) Look up cutoff at Dictionary.com
1640s, "act of cutting off," also "portion cut off," from verbal phrase cut off (late 14c.). Of rivers, from 1773; of roads, from 1806; of clothing (adj.), from 1840.
cutout (n.) Look up cutout at Dictionary.com
1851, from verbal phrase, from cut (v.) + out (adv.).
cutpurse (n.) Look up cutpurse at Dictionary.com
"one who steals by the method of cutting purses, a common practice when men wore their purses at their girdles" [Johnson], mid-14c., from cut (v.) + purse (n.). The word continued after the method switched to picking pockets.
cutter (n.) Look up cutter at Dictionary.com
late 12c., "one who cuts" in any sense, agent noun from cut (v.). As a type of small, single-masted vessel, from 1762, earlier "boat belonging to a ship of war" (1745), perhaps so called from the notion of "cutting" through the water.
cutthroat (n.) Look up cutthroat at Dictionary.com
also cut-throat, 1530s, from cut (v.) + throat (n.). As an adjective from 1560s. Of card games from 1823.
cutting edge Look up cutting edge at Dictionary.com
also cutting-edge, 1825 in the literal sense (often at first with reference to plows); figurative sense is from 1964.
cuttlefish (n.) Look up cuttlefish at Dictionary.com
Old English cudele "the cuttlefish;" first element perhaps related to Middle Low German küdel "container, pocket;" Old Norse koddi "cushion, testicle;" and Old English codd (see cod).
cuz Look up cuz at Dictionary.com
17c. as an abbreviation of cousin; 1889 as an attempt to represent the lazy pronunciation of because.
Cuzco Look up Cuzco at Dictionary.com
city in Peru, former capital of the Inca Empire, from Quechua (Inca), literally "navel," in a figurative meaning "center" (of the world, as the navel is the center of the body). Other places known as "navel of the world" include Delphi, Jerusalem, Rome, Easter Island, and Mount Kailash in Tibet.
cv (n.) Look up cv at Dictionary.com
abbreviation of curriculum vitae.
cwm (n.) Look up cwm at Dictionary.com
1853, from Welsh cwm "coomb" (see coomb).
cyan (n.) Look up cyan at Dictionary.com
1889, short for cyan blue (1879), from Greek kyanos "dark blue, dark blue enamel, lapis lazuli," probably a non-Indo-European word, but perhaps akin to, or from, Hittite *kuwanna(n)- "copper blue."
cyanide (n.) Look up cyanide at Dictionary.com
a salt of hydrocyanic acid, 1826, coined from cyan-, comb. form for carbon and nitrogen compounds, from Greek kyanos "dark blue" (see cyan) + chemical ending -ide, on analogy of chloride. So called because it first had been obtained by heating the dye pigment powder known as Prussian blue (see Prussian).
cyanosis (n.) Look up cyanosis at Dictionary.com
"blue disease," the "blue jaundice" of the ancients, 1820, Medical Latin, from Greek kyanosis, from kyanos "dark blue color" (see cyan) + -osis.
cyanotic (adj.) Look up cyanotic at Dictionary.com
1833, from comb. form of root of cyanosis + -ic.
cyber Look up cyber at Dictionary.com
as an element in word formation, ultimately from cybernetics (q.v.). It enjoyed explosive use with the rise of the Internet early 1990s. One researcher (Nagel) counted 104 words formed from it by 1994. Cyberpunk (by 1986) and cyberspace were among the earliest.
Cyber is such a perfect prefix. Because nobody has any idea what it means, it can be grafted onto any old word to make it seem new, cool -- and therefore strange, spooky. ["New York" magazine, Dec. 23, 1996]
As a stand-alone, it is attested by 1998 as short for cybersex (which is attested by 1995).
cybercafe (n.) Look up cybercafe at Dictionary.com
1994, from cyber + cafe.
cybernetic (adj.) Look up cybernetic at Dictionary.com
1951, back-formation from cybernetics. Greek kybernetikos meant "good at steering."
cybernetics (n.) Look up cybernetics at Dictionary.com
coined 1948 by U.S. mathematician Norbert Wiener (1894-1964) from Greek kybernetes "steersman" (metaphorically "guide, governor") + -ics; perhaps based on 1830s French cybernétique "the art of governing."
The future offers very little hope for those who expect that our new mechanical slaves will offer us a world in which we may rest from thinking. Help us they may, but at the cost of supreme demands upon our honesty and our intelligence. [Norbert Wiener, "God and Golem, Inc.," 1964]
cyberspace (n.) Look up cyberspace at Dictionary.com
1982, often as two words at first, coined by science fiction writer William Gibson (best known for "Neuromancer") and used by him in a short story published in 1982, from cyber- (see cybernetics) + space (n.).
cyborg (n.) Look up cyborg at Dictionary.com
1960, a blend of the first elements of cybernetic and organism.