directorate (n.) Look up directorate at
1837, from director + -ate (1).
directory (n.) Look up directory at
1540s, "guide, book of rules," from Medieval Latin directorium, noun use of neuter of Latin directorius, from directus (see direct (v.)). Meaning "alphabetical listing of inhabitants of a region" is from 1732; listing of telephone numbers is from 1908. As an adjective, from mid-15c.
dirge (n.) Look up dirge at
early 13c., dirige (current contracted form is from c. 1400), from Latin dirige "direct!" imperative of dirigere "to direct," probably from antiphon Dirige, Domine, Deus meus, in conspectu tuo viam meam, "Direct, O Lord, my God, my way in thy sight," from Psalm v:9, which opened the Matins service in the Office of the Dead. Transferred sense of "any funeral song" is from c. 1500.
dirigible (n.) Look up dirigible at
"airship," 1885, from French dirigeable, literally "capable of being directed or guided," from Latin dirigere (see direct (v.)). The word existed as an adjective in English from 1580s, with the literal sense.
dirk (n.) Look up dirk at
c. 1600, perhaps from Dirk, the proper name, which was used in Scandinavian for "a picklock." But the earliest spellings were dork, durk (Johnson, 1755, seems to be responsible for the modern spelling), and the earliest association is with Highlanders, however there seems to be no such word in Gaelic, where the proper name is biodag. Another candidate is German dolch "dagger." The masc. given name is a variant of Derrick, ultimately from the Germanic compound in Dietrich.
dirndl (n.) Look up dirndl at
1937, from German dialectal diminutive of dirne "girl" (in dirndlkleid "peasant dress"), from a diminutive of Middle High German dierne "maid," from Old High German thiorna, which is related to Old English þegn (see thane).
dirt (n.) Look up dirt at
15c. metathesis of Middle English drit, drytt "mud, dirt, dung" (c. 1300), from Old Norse drit, cognate with Old English dritan "to void excrement," from Proto-Germanic *dritan (cognates: Dutch drijten, Old High German trizan). Used abusively of persons from c. 1300. Meaning "gossip" first attested 1926 (in Hemingway); dirt bike is 1960s. Dirt-cheap is from 1821. Dirt road attested by 1852.
dirty (adj.) Look up dirty at
c. 1500, from dirt + -y (2). Earlier dritty (late 14c.). Meaning "smutty, morally unclean" is from 1590s. Of colors, from 1690s. Dirty linen "personal or familial secrets" is first recorded 1860s. Dirty work in the figurative sense is from 1764; dirty trick is from 1670s. The dirty look someone gives you is from 1928; dirty old man "superannuated lecher" is from 1932. Related: dirtiness.
dirty (v.) Look up dirty at
1590s, from dirty (adj.). Related: Dirtied; dirtying.
dis (v.) Look up dis at
also diss, slang, by 1980, shortening of disrespect or dismiss, originally in African-American vernacular, popularized by hip hop. Related: Dissed; dissing. Earlier it was short for disconnected in the telephone sense and used figuratively in slang to mean "weak in the head" (1925).
Dis Look up Dis at
Roman underworld god, from Latin Dis, contracted from dives "rich," which is related to divus "divine, god," hence "favored by god." Compare Pluto and Old Church Slavonic bogatu "rich," from bogu "god."
dis- Look up dis- at
(assimilated as dif- before -f-, to di- before most voiced consonants), word-forming element meaning 1. "lack of, not" (as in dishonest); 2. "do the opposite of" (as in disallow); 3. "apart, away" (as in discard), from Old French des- or directly from Latin dis- "apart, in a different direction, between," figuratively "not, un-," also "exceedingly, utterly," from PIE *dis- "apart, asunder" (cognates: Old English te-, Old Saxon ti-, Old High German ze-, German zer-).

The PIE root is a secondary form of *dwis- and thus is related to Latin bis "twice" (originally *dvis) and to duo, on notion of "two ways, in twain."

In classical Latin, dis- paralelled de- and had much the same meaning, but in Late Latin dis- came to be the favored form and this passed into Old French as des-, the form used for new compound words formed in Old French, where it increasingly had a privative sense ("not").

In English, many of these words eventually were altered back to dis-, while in French many have been altered back to de-. The usual confusion prevails.
disability (n.) Look up disability at
1570s, "want of ability;" see dis- + ability. Related: Disabilities.
disable (v.) Look up disable at
mid-15c., from dis- "do the opposite of" + ablen (v.) "to make fit" (see able). Related: Disabled; disabling. Earlier in the same sense was unable (v.) "make unfit, render unsuitable" (c. 1400).
disabled (adj.) Look up disabled at
"incapacitated," 1630s, past participle adjective from disable. Earlier it meant "legally disqualified" (mid-15c.).
disabuse (v.) Look up disabuse at
1610s, from dis- + abuse (v.). Related: Disabused; disabusing.
disaccord (v.) Look up disaccord at
late 14c.; see dis- + accord (v.). Related: Disaccorded; disaccording; disaccordance.
disaccustom (v.) Look up disaccustom at
late 15c., from Old French desacostumer "render unfamiliar" (Modern French désaccoutumer), from des- (see dis-) + acostumer (see accustom). Related: Disaccustomed.
disadvantage (n.) Look up disadvantage at
late 14c., disavauntage, from Old French desavantage (13c.), from des- (see dis-) + avantage (see advantage).
disadvantage (v.) Look up disadvantage at
1530s, from disadvantage (n.). Related: Disadvantaged; disadvantaging.
disadvantaged (adj.) Look up disadvantaged at
1610s, past participle adjective from disadvantage (v.). Of races or classes deprived of opportunities for advancement, from 1902, a word popularized by sociologists. As a noun, shorthand for disadvantaged persons, it is attested by 1939.
disadvantageous (adj.) Look up disadvantageous at
c. 1600; see disadvantage (n.) + -ous. Related: Disadvantageously.
disaffect (v.) Look up disaffect at
1610s, from dis- + affect (v.1). Related: Disaffected; disaffecting.
disaffected (adj.) Look up disaffected at
"estranged, hostile," usually in reference to authority, 1630s, past participle adjective from disaffect. Related: Disaffectedly; disaffectedness.
disaffection (n.) Look up disaffection at
c. 1600; see dis- + affection.
disagree (v.) Look up disagree at
late 15c., "refuse to assent," from Old French desagreer (12c.), from des- (see dis-) + agreer (see agree). Related: Disagreed; disagreeing.
disagreeable (adj.) Look up disagreeable at
c. 1400, "not in agreement," from Old French desagreable (13c.), from des- (see dis-) + agreable (see agreeable). Meaning "not in accord with one's taste" is from 1690s. Related: Disagreeably; disagreeableness. Slightly earlier in same sense was unagreeable (late 14c.).
disagreement (n.) Look up disagreement at
late 15c.; see dis- + agreement.
disallow (v.) Look up disallow at
late 14c., "to refuse to praise," from Old French desalouer "to blame," from des- (see dis-) + alouer (see allow); meaning "to reject" is from 1550s. Related: Disallowed; disallowing; disallowance.
disallowable (adj.) Look up disallowable at
mid-15c., from disallow + -able.
disambiguate (v.) Look up disambiguate at
1963, back-formation from disambiguation. Related: Disambiguated; disambiguating.
disambiguation (n.) Look up disambiguation at
1827; see dis- + ambiguous + -ation.
disappear (v.) Look up disappear at
early 15c., disaperen, from dis- "do the opposite of" + appear. Earlier was disparish (early 15c.), from French disparaiss-, stem of disparaître. Transitive sense. "cause to disappear," is from 1897 in chemistry; by 1948 of inconvenient persons. Related: Disappeared; disappearing; disappears. Slang disappearing act is originally of magic shows; in figurative sense of "getting away" first attested 1913.
disappearance (n.) Look up disappearance at
1712; see disappear + -ance.
disappoint (v.) Look up disappoint at
early 15c., "dispossess of appointed office," from Middle French desappointer (14c.) "undo the appointment, remove from office," from des- (see dis-) + appointer "appoint" (see appoint).

Modern sense of "to frustrate expectations" (late 15c.) is from secondary meaning of "fail to keep an appointment." Related: Disappointed; disappointing.
disappointed (adj.) Look up disappointed at
1550s, past participle adjective from disappoint. Related: Disappointedly.
disappointment (n.) Look up disappointment at
1610s, "fact of disappointing;" see disappoint + -ment. Meaning "state or feeling of being disappointed" is from 1756. Meaning "a thing that disappoints" is from 1756.
disapprobation (n.) Look up disapprobation at
1640s; see dis- + approbation.
disapproval (n.) Look up disapproval at
1660s; see disapprove + -al (2).
disapprove (v.) Look up disapprove at
late 15c., "disprove;" as the reverse of approve it is first attested 1640s. See dis- + approve. Related: Disapproved; disapproving.
disarm (v.) Look up disarm at
late 14c., from Old French desarmer (11c.), from des- (see dis-) + armer "to arm" (see arm (v.)). The figurative sense is slightly earlier in English than the literal. Related: Disarmed; disarming.
disarmament (n.) Look up disarmament at
1795; see dis- + armament.
disarray (v.) Look up disarray at
late 14c.; see dis- "lack of" + array. Perhaps formed on the analogy of Old French desareer.
disarray (n.) Look up disarray at
early 15c., "disorder, confusion;" see disarray (v.).
disarticulate (adj.) Look up disarticulate at
early 15c.; see dis- + articulate (adj.).
disassemble (v.) Look up disassemble at
1610s, "to disperse;" see dis- + assemble. Meaning "to take apart" is from 1922. Related: Disassembled; disassembling; disassembly.
disassociate (v.) Look up disassociate at
c. 1600, from dis- + associate (v.). Related: Disassociated; disassociating; disassociation.
disaster (n.) Look up disaster at
1590s, from Middle French désastre (1560s), from Italian disastro "ill-starred," from dis-, here merely pejorative (see dis-) + astro "star, planet," from Latin astrum, from Greek astron (see star (n.)). The sense is astrological, of a calamity blamed on an unfavorable position of a planet.
disastrous (adj.) Look up disastrous at
1580s, "ill-starred," from French désastreux (16c.), from désastre (see disaster) or from Italian desastroso. Meaning "calamitous" is from c. 1600. Related: Disastrously.
disavow (v.) Look up disavow at
late 14c., from Old French desavouer (13c.), from des- "opposite of" (see dis-) + avouer (see avow). Related: Disavowed; disavowing.