- fruity (adj.)
- 1650s, from fruit + -y (2). Related: Fruitiness.
- frumbierdling (n.)
- Old English word meaning "a youth;" from fruma "first, beginning" (see foremost) + beard (n.) + -ling.
- frumentaceous (adj.)
- 1660s, from Late Latin frumentaceus "of grain," from frumentum "grain, corn," related to frui "to use, enjoy" (see fruit). Hence also frumenty "potage of boiled hulled grain mixed with milk and sweetened" (late 14c.), from Old French frumentee, Medieval Latin frumenticium.
- frumious (adj.)
- 1871 ("Jabberwocky"), coined by Lewis Carroll, who said it was a blend of fuming and furious. He used it later in "The Hunting of the Snark" (1876).
- frump (n.)
- "cross, unstylish person," especially a woman or girl, 1817, from a group of related words of uncertain origin: Frump (n.) "a mocking speech" (1550s), "a sneer or snort" (1580s); frump (v.) "to mock, flout, taunt" (1570s); frumps (n.) "ill-humor" (1660s); frumpish (adj.) "cross-tempered" (1640s); and compare frumpy.
- frumpy (adj.)
- 1746, "cross-tempered," probably from the frumps (n.) "bad temper" (1660s) and an earlier verb meaning "to mock, browbeat" (1550s), of obscure origin, perhaps imitative of a sneer or derisive snort. See also frump. Sense of "sour-looking, unfashionable" is from 1825, but this may be a shortening of frumple "to wrinkle, crumple" (late 14c.), from Middle Dutch verrompelen "to wrinkle," from ver- "completely" + rompelen "to rumple." Related: Frumpily; frumpiness.
- frustrate (v.)
- mid-15c., from Latin frustratus, past participle of frustrari "to deceive, disappoint, make vain," from frustra (adv.) "in vain, in error," related to fraus "injury, harm" (see fraud). Related: Frustrated; frustrating.
- frustrated (adj.)
- "disappointed," 1640s, past participle adjective from frustrate.
- frustration (n.)
- "act of frustrating," 1550s, from Latin frustrationem (nominative frustratio) "a deception, a disappointment," noun of action from past participle stem of frustrari (see frustrate). Earlier (mid-15c.) with a now-obsolete sense of "nullification."
- frustum (n.)
- "remaining piece after a part has been cut off," 1650s, in mathematics, from Latin frustum "piece broken off," from PIE *bhrus-to-, from root *bhreu- "to cut, break up" (see bruise (v.)).
- fry (v.)
- late 13c., "cook (something) in a shallow pan over a fire," from Old French frire "to fry" (13c.), from Latin frigere "to roast or fry," from PIE *bher- (4) "to cook, bake" (source also of Sanskrit bhrjjati "roasts," bharjanah "roasting;" Persian birishtan "to roast;" Greek phrygein "to roast, bake"). Intransitive sense is from late 14c. U.S. slang meaning "execute in the electric chair" is U.S. slang from 1929. As a noun, "fried meat," from 1630s. Related: Fried; frying. Frying pan recorded from mid-14c.
- fry (n.)
- early 14c. (late 13c. in Anglo-Latin), "young fish," probably from an Anglo-French noun from Old French frier, froier "to rub, spawn (by rubbing abdomen on sand)," from Vulgar Latin *frictiare. First applied to human offspring c. 1400, in Scottish. Some sources trace this usage, or the whole of the word, to Old Norse frjo, fræ "seed, offspring."
- fryer (n.)
- also frier, 1851 of fish for frying, 1923 of chickens; from fry (v.).
- frying-pan (n.)
- mid-14c., from verbal noun from fry (v.) + pan (n.). To go out of the frying-pan into the fire ("from a bad situation to a worse one") is first attested in Thomas More (1532).
- fubar (adj.)
- by 1944, acronym from fucked up beyond all recognition. Said to be military slang originally.
- fubsy (adj.)
- "squat and fat," 1780, from fub/fubs "small, chubby person" (1610s), which also was used as a term of endearment.
- fuchsia (n.)
- red color (like that of the Fuchsia flowers), 1921, from the ornamental shrub (1703, Plumier; by 1753 in English), from the Latinized name of German botanist Leonhard Fuchs (1501-1566) + abstract noun ending -ia. The German surname is literally "fox." Not related to Latin fucus "seaweed, sea wrack, tangle" (see fucus) which also gave its name to a red color prepared from it.
- fuck (v.)
- "to have sexual intercourse with" (transitive), until recently a difficult word to trace in usage, in part because it was omitted as taboo by the editors of the original OED when the "F" entries were compiled (1893-97). Johnson also had excluded the word, and fuck wasn't in a single English language dictionary from 1795 to 1965. "The Penguin Dictionary" broke the taboo in the latter year. Houghton Mifflin followed, in 1969, with "The American Heritage Dictionary," but it also published a "Clean Green" edition without the word, to assure itself access to the public high school market.
Written form attested at least from early 16c.; OED 2nd edition cites 1503, in the form fukkit, and the earliest attested appearance of current spelling is 1535 ("Bischops ... may fuck thair fill and be vnmaryit" [Sir David Lyndesay, "Ane Satyre of the Thrie Estaits"]). Presumably it is a more ancient word, but one not written in the kind of texts that have survived from Old English and Middle English [September 2015: the verb appears to have been found recently in an English court manuscript from 1310]. Buck cites proper name John le Fucker from 1278, but that surname could have other explanations. The word apparently is hinted at in a scurrilous 15c. poem, titled "Flen flyys," written in bastard Latin and Middle English. The relevant line reads:
Non sunt in celi "They [the monks] are not in heaven because they fuck the wives of [the town of] Ely." Fuccant is pseudo-Latin, and in the original it is written in cipher. The earliest examples of the word otherwise are from Scottish, which suggests a Scandinavian origin, perhaps from a word akin to Norwegian dialectal fukka "copulate," or Swedish dialectal focka "copulate, strike, push," and fock "penis." Another theory traces the Modern English verb to Middle English fyke, fike "move restlessly, fidget" (see fike) which also meant "dally, flirt," and probably is from a general North Sea Germanic word (compare Middle Dutch fokken, German ficken "fuck," earlier "make quick movements to and fro, flick," still earlier "itch, scratch;" the vulgar sense attested from 16c.). This would parallel in sense the vulgar Middle English term for "have sexual intercourse," swive, from Old English swifan "to move lightly over, sweep" (see swivel). But OED remarks that these "cannot be shown to be related" to the English word. Liberman has this to say:
quia fuccant uuiuys of heli
Germanic words of similar form (f + vowel + consonant) and meaning 'copulate' are numerous. One of them is G. ficken. They often have additional senses, especially 'cheat,' but their basic meaning is 'move back and forth.' ... Most probably, fuck is a borrowing from Low German and has no cognates outside Germanic.
Chronology and phonology rule out Shipley's attempt to derive it from Middle English firk "to press hard, beat." The unkillable urban legend that this word is an acronym of some sort (a fiction traceable on the internet to 1995 but probably predating that), and the "pluck yew" fable, are results of ingenious trifling (also see here). The Old English verb for "have sexual intercourse with" was hæman, from ham "dwelling, home," with a sense of "take home, co-habit." French foutre and Italian fottere seem to resemble the English word but are unrelated, descending rather from Latin futuere, which perhaps is from PIE root *bhau(t)- "knock, strike off," extended via a figurative use "from the sexual application of violent action" [Shipley; compare the sexual slang use of bang, etc.].
Fuck was outlawed in print in England (by the Obscene Publications Act, 1857) and the U.S. (by the Comstock Act, 1873). The word continued in common speech, however. During World War I: "It became so common that an effective way for the soldier to express this emotion was to omit this word. Thus if a sergeant said, 'Get your ----ing rifles!' it was understood as a matter of routine. But if he said 'Get your rifles!' there was an immediate implication of urgency and danger." [John Brophy, "Songs and Slang of the British Soldier: 1914-1918," pub. 1930]. The legal barriers against use in print broke down in mid-20c. with the "Ulysses" decision (U.S., 1933) and "Lady Chatterley's Lover" (U.S., 1959; U.K., 1960). The major breakthrough in publication was James Jones' "From Here to Eternity" (1950), with 50 fucks (down from 258 in the original manuscript).
The abbreviation F (or eff) probably began as euphemistic, but by 1943 it was regarded as a cuss word in its own right. In 1948, the publishers of "The Naked and the Dead" persuaded Norman Mailer to use the euphemism fug. When Mailer later was introduced to Dorothy Parker, she greeted him with, "So you're the man who can't spell 'fuck' " [The quip sometimes is attributed to Tallulah Bankhead]. Hemingway used muck in "For Whom the Bell Tolls" (1940). Related: Fucked; fucking. Fuck-all "nothing" first recorded 1960. Verbal phrase fuck up "to ruin, spoil, destroy" is attested from c. 1916. A widespread group of Slavic words (such as Polish pierdolić) can mean both "fornicate" and "make a mistake." Fuck off attested from 1929; as a command to depart, by 1944. Egyptian legal agreements from the 23rd Dynasty (749-21 B.C.E.) frequently include the phrase, "If you do not obey this decree, may a donkey copulate with you!" [Reinhold Aman, "Maledicta," Summer 1977].
- fuck (n.)
- 1670s, "an act of sexual intercourse," from fuck (v.). From 1874 in coarse slang sense "a woman (considered in sexual terms);" from 1929 as something one doesn't give when one doesn't care. Flying fuck originally meant "sex had on horseback" and is first attested c. 1800 in broadside ballad "New Feats of Horsemanship."
- fucker (n.)
- 1590s, "one who copulates," agent noun from fuck (v.). By 1893 as a general term of abuse (or admiration).
DUCK F-CK-R. The man who has the care of the poultry on board a ſhip of war. ["Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue," 1796]
- fucking (adj.)
- past participle adjective from fuck (v.). As a mere intensive, attested from 1893, probably older.
- fuckwit (n.)
- "fool idiot," slang, c. 1970, originally British or Australian English, from fuck + wit (n.).
- fucus (n.)
- algae genus, 1716, from Latin fucus, a type of reddish seaweed or rock-lichen, from or related to Greek phykos "seaweed," which is said to be of Semitic origin. From it was prepared in ancient times a red dye for woolen goods; hence in Greek and Latin it also had a sense "red paint" and was the general word for the article of women's make-up that supplied the place of rouge; and in Latin it was further extended to include "deceit, disguise." The custom is said to have originated among the Ionians, who were in close contact with Semitic peoples. The word was in Middle English as fuke, fuike "dissimulation" (mid-15c.); "red woolen cloth" (late 15c.); later fucus "a paint, dye," especially for the face, "rouge," also commonly used 17c. figuratively as "disguise, pretense." Hence also obsolete fucate "disguised, dissembling" (1530s), literally "colored, beautified with paint," from Latin fucatus "painted, painted, colored, disguised," past participle adjective from fucare, a verb derived from fucus.
- fud (n.)
- "backside, buttocks," 1785, a Scottish and Northern dialect word of unknown origin; perhaps from Scandinavian.
- fuddle (v.)
- 1580s, "to get drunk" (intransitive); c. 1600, "to confuse as though with drink" (transitive), of obscure origin, perhaps from Low German fuddeln "work in a slovenly manner (as if drunk)," from fuddle "worthless cloth." The more common derivative befuddle dates only to 1873. Related: Fuddled; fuddling. A hard-drinker in 17c. might be called a fuddle-cap (1660s).
- fuddy-duddy (n.)
- "old-fashioned person," 1871, American English, of uncertain origin.
- fudge (v.)
- "put together clumsily or dishonestly," by 1771 (perhaps from 17c.); perhaps an alteration of fadge "make suit, fit" (1570s), a verb of unknown origin. The verb fudge later had an especial association with sailors and log books. The traditional story of the origin of the interjection fudge "lies! nonsense!" (1766; see fudge (n.2)) traces it to a sailor's retort to anything considered lies or nonsense, from Captain Fudge, "who always brought home his owners a good cargo of lies" [Isaac Disraeli, 1791, citing a pamphlet from 1700]. It seems there really was a late 17c. Captain Fudge, called "Lying Fudge," and perhaps his name reinforced this form of fadge in the sense of "contrive without the necessary materials." The surname is from Fuche, a pet form of the masc. proper name Fulcher, from Germanic and meaning literally "people-army."
- fudge (n.1)
- type of confection, 1895, American English, apparently a word first used among students at women's colleges; perhaps a special use from fudge (v.) or its noun derivative, via the notion of "insubstantial" or of something "faked-up" on the spot. The verb was used in school slang, and compare fudge (n.) "a made-up story" (1797).
'He lies,' answered Lord Etherington, 'so far as he pretends I know of such papers. I consider the whole story as froth -- foam, fudge, or whatever is most unsubstantial. ...' [Scott, "St. Ronan's Well," 1823]
- fudge (n.2)
- "nonsense, rubbish," (1791), earlier and more usually as a contemptuous interjection, "lies! nonsense!" Probably a natural extension from fudge (v.) "put together clumsily or dishonestly," q.v. But Farmer suggests provincial French fuche, feuche, "an exclamation of contempt from Low German futsch = begone."
- fuel (v.)
- 1590s, "feed or furnish with fuel," literal and figurative, from fuel (n.). Intransitive sense "to get fuel" (originally firewood) is from 1880. Related: Fueled; fueling.
- fuel (n.)
- c. 1200, feuel, feul "fuel, material for burning," also figurative, from Old French foaille "fuel for heating," from Medieval Latin legal term focalia "right to demand material for making fire, right of cutting fuel," from classical Latin focalia "brushwood for fuel," from neuter plural of Latin focalis "pertaining to a hearth," from focus "hearth, fireplace" (see focus (n.)). Figurative use from 1570s. Of food, as fuel for the body, 1876. As "combustible liquid for an internal combustion engine" from 1886. A French derivative is fouailler "woodyard." Fuel-oil is from 1882.
- fug (n.)
- "thick, close, stuffy atmosphere," 1888. "orig dial. & School slang" [OED].
- fugacious (adj.)
- "fleeing, likely to flee," 1630s, with -ous + Latin fugaci-, stem of fugax "apt to flee, timid, shy," figuratively "transitory, fleeting," from fugere "to flee" (see fugitive). Related: Fugaciously; fugaciousness; fugacity.
- fugal (adj.)
- 1843, "pertaining to a fugue; in the style of a fugue," from fugue + -al (1).
- fugitive (n.)
- late 14c., "one who flees, a runaway, a fugitive from justice, an outlaw," from fugitive (adj.). Old French fugitif also was used as a noun meaning "fugitive person," and Latin fugitivus (adj.) commonly also was used as a noun meaning "a runaway, fugitive slave, deserter."
- fugitive (adj.)
- late 14c., "fleeing, having fled, having taken flight," from Old French fugitif, fuitif "absent, missing," from Latin fugitivus "fleeing," past participle adjective from stem of fugere "to flee, fly, take flight, run away; become a fugitive, leave the country, go into exile; pass quickly; vanish, disappear, perish; avoid, shun; escape the notice of, be unknown to," from PIE root *bheug- (1) "to flee" (source also of Greek pheugein "to flee," Lithuanian bugstu "be frightened," bauginti "frighten someone," baugus "timid, nervous"). Old English had flyma.
Meaning "lasting but a short time, fleeting" is from c. 1500. Hence its use in literature for short compositions written for passing occasions or purposes (1766).
- fugleman (n.)
- also fugelman, "expert soldier placed in front of a regiment or company in exercises as an example to the others," a mangled borrowing of German Flügelmann "leader of a file," literally "wing-man," from Flügel "wing" (related to fliegen "to fly;" see fly (v.1)) + Mann (see man (n.)).
- fugly (adj.)
- by 1995, a contraction of fucking ugly. Perhaps with conscious echo of fugh an imitative expression of revulsion or abhorrence recorded from 1680s.
- fugue (n.)
- type of musical composition, 1590s, fuge, from Italian fuga, literally "flight," also "ardor," from Latin fuga "a running away, act of fleeing," from fugere "to flee" (see fugitive (adj.)). Current English spelling (1660s) is from the French version of the Italian word.
A Fugue is a composition founded upon one subject, announced at first in one part alone, and subsequently imitated by all the other parts in turn, according to certain general principles to be hereafter explained. The name is derived from the Latin word fuga, a flight, from the idea that one part starts on its course alone, and that those which enter later are pursuing it. ["Fugue," Ebenezer Prout, 1891]
- Fuhrer (n.)
- 1934, from Führer und Reichskanzler, title assumed by Hitler in 1934 as head of the German state, from German Führer "leader," from führen "to lead," from Middle High German vüeren "to lead, drive," from Old High German fuoren "to set in motion, lead," causative of faran "to go, travel," from Proto-Germanic *faran- "to go," from PIE root *per- (2) "to lead, pass over." According to OED, Hitler's title was modeled on Mussolini's Duce.
A majority can never replace the individual. ... Just as a hundred fools do not make one wise man, a heroic decision is not likely to come from a hundred cowards. [Adolf Hitler, "Mein Kampf," 1933]
- mountain in Japan, also Fujiyama (with Japanese yama "mountain"), of unknown origin. Some of the senses that have been suggested are "prosperous man," "fire-spitter," "incomparable," and "beauty of the long slope hanging in the sky."
- Fulah (n.)
- Sudanese people, 1832, from the native name. Related: Fulani.
- Fulbright (n.)
- in education, a reference to U.S. Sen. J. William Fulbright (1905-1995) of Arkansas, especially to the Fulbright Act of 1946, which authorized proceeds from sales of U.S. war surplus materials to be used to fund higher education overseas.
- fulcrum (n.)
- in mechanics, "a prop, a support" (on which a lever turns), 1670s, from Latin fulcrum "bedpost, foot of a couch," from fulcire "to prop up, support" (see balk (n.)).
- fulfil (v.)
- see fulfill. Related: fulfilment.
- fulfill (v.)
- Old English fullfyllan "fill up" (a room, a ship, etc.), "make full; take the place of (something)," from full (adj.), here perhaps with a sense of "completion" + fyllan (see fill (v.), which is ultimately from the same root). Used from mid-13c. in reference to prophecy (probably translating Latin implere, adimplere). From mid-13c. as "do, perform; carry out, consummate, carry into effect;" from c. 1300 as "complete, finish; satiate, satisfy, gratify." Related: Fulfilled; fulfilling. Modern English combinations with full tend to have it at the end of the word (as -ful), but this is a recent development and in Old English it was more common at the start, but this word and fulsome appear to be the only survivors.
- fulfillment (n.)
- 1775, "a filling or carrying out, completion;" see fulfill + -ment.
- fulgent (adj.)
- "bright, dazzling," early 15c., from Latin fulgentem (nominative fulgens) "shining, bright, dazzling," present participle of fulgere "to shine" (from PIE *bhleg- "to shine, flash," from root *bhel- (1) "to shine, flash, burn;" see bleach (v.)). Related: Fulgently.
- full (adj.)
- Old English full "containing all that can be received; having eaten or drunk to repletion; filled; perfect, entire, utter," from Proto-Germanic *fulla- "full" (source also of Old Saxon full, Old Frisian ful, Dutch vol, Old High German fol, German voll, Old Norse fullr, Gothic fulls), from PIE *pele- (1) "to fill" (see poly-). Related: Fuller; fullest.
The adverb is Old English ful "very, fully, entirely, completely" and was common in Middle English (full well, full many, etc.); sense of "quite, exactly, precisely" is from 1580s. Full moon, one with its whole disc illuminated, was Old English fulles monan; first record of full-blood in reference to racial purity is from 1812. Full house is 1710 in the theatrical sense, 1887 in the poker sense (three of a kind and a pair, earlier full-hand, 1850). Full-dress (adj.) "appropriate to a formal occasion" is from 1761, from the noun phrase.
- full (v.)
- "to tread or beat cloth to cleanse or thicken it," late 14c., from Old French foler, fouler "trample on, press," from Latin fullo "fuller, launderer," also a kind of beetle, a word of unknown etymology. Perhaps the Middle English word was from Old English agent-noun fullere, which probably was formed from Latin fullo with a native ending.