photophobia (n.) Look up photophobia at
1799, from photo- + -phobia. Related: Photophobic.
photoshop (v.) Look up photoshop at
"to edit an image using a computer program," 1992, originally, and properly still, only in reference to Photoshop, a bitmap graphics editor trademarked and published by Adobe, released in 1990. Like Taser and Dumpster, it has a tendency to become generic, but if you use it that way in print their lawyers will still send you The Letter. Related: Photoshopped; photoshopping.
photosphere (n.) Look up photosphere at
1660s, "orb of light," from photo- + -sphere. Astronomical sense is from 1848.
photostat (n.) Look up photostat at
1909, a type of copying machine (trademark Commercial Camera Company, Providence, R.I.) whose name became a generic noun and verb (1914) for "photocopy;" from photo- + stat.
photosynthesis (n.) Look up photosynthesis at
1898, loan-translation of German Photosynthese, from photo- "light" (see photo-) + synthese "synthesis" (see synthesis). Another early word for it was photosyntax.
[T]he body of the work has been rendered into English with fidelity, the only change of moment being the substitution of the word "photosynthesis" for that of "assimilation." This change follows from a suggestion by Dr. Barnes, made a year ago before the American Association at Madison, who clearly pointed out the need of a distinctive term for the synthetical process in plants, brought about by protoplasm in the presence of chlorophyll and light. He proposed the word "photosyntax," which met with favor. In the discussion Professor MacMillan suggested the word "photosynthesis," as etymologically more satisfactory and accurate, a claim which Dr. Barnes showed could not be maintained. The suggestion of Dr. Barnes not only received tacit acceptance by the botanists of the association, but was practically approved by the Madison Congress in the course of a discussion upon this point. ["The Botanical Gazette," vol. XIX, 1894]
photosynthesize (v.) Look up photosynthesize at
1910, from photosynthesis + -ize. Related: Photosynthesized; photosynthesizing.
phototropism (n.) Look up phototropism at
1899, from German phototropie (1892), from photo- + tropism.
photovoltaic (adj.) Look up photovoltaic at
1923, from photo- + voltaic. Related: Photovoltaics (see -ics).
phrasal (adj.) Look up phrasal at
1871, from phrase (v.) + -al (1). Related: Phrasally.
phrase (n.) Look up phrase at
1520s, "manner or style of expression," also "group of words with some unity," from Late Latin phrasis "diction," from Greek phrasis "speech, way of speaking, enunciation, phraseology," from phrazein "to express, tell," from phrazesthai "to consider," from PIE *gwhren- "to think" (see frenetic). The musical sense of "short passage" is from 1789.
phrase (v.) Look up phrase at
"to put into a phrase," 1560s; see phrase (n.). Related: Phrased; phrasing.
phraseology (n.) Look up phraseology at
1550s, coined erroneously in Greek as phraseologia (1550s), from Greek phrasis "way of speaking" (see phrase (n.)) + -logia (see -logy). The correct form would be *phrasiology. Originally "a phrase book," meaning "way of arranging words, characteristic style of expression" is from 1660s.
phrasing (n.) Look up phrasing at
1610s, verbal noun from phrase (v.).
phreak (n.) Look up phreak at
1972, originally in phone phreak, one of a set of technically creative people who electronically hacked or defrauded telephone companies of the day.
The phreaks first appeared on the US scene in the early 1960s, when a group of MIT students were found to have conducted a late night dialling experiment on the Defense Department's secret network. They were rewarded with jobs when they explained their system to Bell investigators. ... The name "phone phreak" identified the enthisiasts with the common underground usage of freak as someone who was cool and used drugs. ["New Scientist," Dec. 13, 1973]
The ph- in phone may have suggested the alteration, and this seems to be the original of the 1990s slang fad for substituting ph- for f- (as in phat).
phrenetic (adj.) Look up phrenetic at
early Modern English restored spelling of frenetic (late 14c.). A doublet of frantic.
phrenic (adj.) Look up phrenic at
"pertaining to the diaphragm," 1704, from Modern Latin phrenicus, from Greek phren "diaphragm, mind" (see phreno-) + -ic.
phreno- Look up phreno- at
before vowels phren-, word-forming element meaning "mind," also "diaphragm," from Greek phreno-, comb. form of phrene properly "diaphragm, muscle which parts the abdomen from the thorax;" in Homer extended to "parts around the heart, breast," hence "heart" (as a seat of passions), "mind, seat of thoughts, wits, senses," of unknown origin.
phrenology (n.) Look up phrenology at
1815, literally "mental science," from phreno- + -logy "study of." Applied to the theory of mental faculties originated by Gall and Spurzheim that led to the 1840s mania for reading personality clues in the shape of one's skull and the "bumps" of the head. Related: Phrenological; phrenologist.
Phrygian Look up Phrygian at
late 15c., "native of Phrygia," region in ancient Asia Minor; Phrygian mode in ancient Greek music theory was held to be "of a warlike character." Phrygian cap (1796) was the type adopted by freed slaves in Roman times, and subsequently identified as the cap of Liberty.
phthisic (adj.) Look up phthisic at
late 14c., tysyk "of or pertaining to a wasting disease," from Old French tisike, phtisique "consumptive" (11c.), from Vulgar Latin *phthisicus, from Greek phthisikos "consumptive," from phthisis "wasting, consumption" (see phthisis). Earlier in English as a noun meaning "wasting disease of the lungs" (mid-14c.). Related: Phthisical.
The old pronunciation dropped the ph-, but this will probably recover its sound now that everyone can read.
phthisis (n.) Look up phthisis at
1520s, from Late Latin phthisis "consumption," from Greek phthisis "wasting, consumption; perishing, decay; waxing," from phthiein "to decay, waste away," from PIE root *dhgwhei- "to perish, die away" (cognates: Sanskrit ksitih "destruction," ksinati "perishes").
phyco- Look up phyco- at
word-forming element in science meaning "seaweed, algae," from Latinized comb. form of Greek phykos "seaweed, sea wrack."
phycology (n.) Look up phycology at
"study of seaweeds," 1847, from phyco- + -logy. Related: Phycological; phycologist.
phylactery (n.) Look up phylactery at
late 14c., "small leathern box containing four Old Testament texts," from Old French filatiere (12c.) and directly from Medieval Latin philaterium, from Late Latin phylacterium "reliquary," from Greek phylacterion "safeguard, amulet," noun use of neuter of adjective phylakterios "serving as a protection," from phylakter "watcher, guard," from phylassein "to guard or ward off," from phylax (genitive phylakos) "guard," of unknown origin. Sometimes worn on the forehead, based on a literal reading of scripture:
Ye shall bind them [my words] for a sign upon your hands, and they shall be for frontlets between your eyes. [Deut. xi:18]
phyletic (adj.) Look up phyletic at
"racial, pertaining to race," 1873, probably coined in German from Greek phyletikos "of one's tribe," from phyletes "fellow tribesman," from phyle (see phylo-).
Phyllis Look up Phyllis at
fem. proper name, generic proper name for a comely rustic maiden in pastoral poetry (1630s), from Latin Phyllis, a girl's name in Virgil, Horace, etc., from Greek Phyllis, female name, literally "foliage of a tree," from phyllon leaf," from PIE *bholyo- "leaf," from root *bhel- (3) "to thrive, bloom," possibly identical with *bhel- (2) "to blow, inflate, swell" (see bole). In English, often spelled Phillis, probably from influence of phil- "loving." Her sweetheart usually was Philander.
phyllo- Look up phyllo- at
before vowels phyll-, word-forming element meaning "leaf," from Greek phyllo-, comb. form of phyllon "leaf," from PIE *bhol-yo- "leaf," suffixed form of root *bhel- (3) "to thrive, bloom" (see folio).
phyllophagous (adj.) Look up phyllophagous at
"leaf-eating," 1819, from phyllo- + -phagous.
phylo- Look up phylo- at
before vowels phyl-, word-forming element from comb. form of Greek phylon, phyle "a tribe," also "a political subdivision in ancient Athens," from base of phyein "to bring forth, produce, make to grow," whence also physis "nature" (see physic).
phylogenesis (n.) Look up phylogenesis at
1870, coined in German by Haeckel, from phylo- + -genesis "birth, origin, creation."
phylogeny (n.) Look up phylogeny at
"genesis and evolution of a phylum," 1869, from German Phylogenie, coined 1866 by German biologist Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (1834-1919) from Greek phylon "race" (see phylo-) + -geneia "origin," from -genes "born" (see genus). Related: Phylogenic.
phylum (n.) Look up phylum at
"division of the plant or animal kingdom," 1868, Modern Latin, coined by French naturalist Georges Léopole Chrétien Frédéric Dagobert, Baron Cuvier (1769-1832) from Greek phylon "race, stock," related to phyle "tribe, clan" (see physic). The immediate source of the English word probably is from German.
physic (n.) Look up physic at
c. 1300, fysike, "art of healing, medical science," also "natural science" (c. 1300), from Old French fisike "natural science, art of healing" (12c.) and directly from Latin physica (fem. singular of physicus) "study of nature," from Greek physike (episteme) "(knowledge) of nature," from fem. of physikos "pertaining to nature," from physis "nature," from phyein "to bring forth, produce, make to grow" (related to phyton "growth, plant," phyle "tribe, race," phyma "a growth, tumor") from PIE root *bheue- "to be exist, grow" (see be). Spelling with ph- attested from late 14c. (see ph). As a noun, "medicine that acts as a laxative," 1610s. The verb meaning "to dose with medicine" is attested from late 14c.
physical (adj.) Look up physical at
early 15c., "of or pertaining to material nature" (in medicine, opposed to surgical), from Medieval Latin physicalis "of nature, natural," from Latin physica "study of nature" (see physic). Meaning "pertaining to matter" is from 1590s; meaning "having to do with the body, corporeal" is attested from 1780. Meaning "characterized by bodily attributes or activities" is attested from 1970. Physical education first recorded 1838; abbreviated form phys ed is from 1955. Physical therapy is from 1922. Related: Physically.
physical (n.) Look up physical at
"a physical examination," by 1934, from physical (adj.).
physicality (n.) Look up physicality at
1590s, from physical + -ity.
physician (n.) Look up physician at
early 13c., fisicien "a healer, a medical practitioner," from Old French fisiciien "physician, doctor, sage" (12c., Modern French physicien means "physicist"), from fisique "art of healing," from Latin physica "natural science" (see physic). Distinguished from surgeon from c. 1400. The ph- spelling attested from late 14c. (see ph).
physicist (n.) Look up physicist at
1836, from physics + -ist. Coined by the Rev. William Whewell (1794-1866), English polymath, to denote a "cultivator of physics" as opposed to a physician.
As we cannot use physician for a cultivator of physics, I have called him a physicist. We need very much a name to describe a cultivator of science in general. I should incline to call him a Scientist. Thus we might say, that as an Artist is a Musician, Painter, or Poet, a Scientist is a Mathematician, Physicist, or Naturalist. [William Whewell, "The Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences," London, 1840]
physico- Look up physico- at
word-forming element meaning "physical, physically; natural," from Latinized comb. form of Greek physikos "natural, physical" (see physic).
physicological (adj.) Look up physicological at
1704, from physicologic "logic illustrated by physics," from physico- + logic. Related: Physicologically.
physics (n.) Look up physics at
1580s, "natural science," from physic in sense of "natural science." Also see -ics. Based on Latin physica (neuter plural), from Greek ta physika, literally "the natural things," name of Aristotle's treatise on nature. Specific sense of "science treating of properties of matter and energy" is from 1715.
physio- Look up physio- at
word-forming element meaning "nature, natural, physical," from Greek physio-, comb. form of physios "nature" (see physic).
physiognomy (n.) Look up physiognomy at
late 14c., "art of judging characters from facial features," from Old French phizonomie and directly from Late Latin physiognomia, from Greek physiognomia "the judging of a person's nature by his features," from physio- (see physio-) + gnomon (genitive gnomonos) "judge, indicator" (see gnomon). Meaning "face, countenance, features" is from c. 1400. Related: Physiognomical.
physiological (adj.) Look up physiological at
c. 1600, "pertaining to natural science," from physiology + -ical. From 1814 as "pertaining to physiology." Related: Physiologically.
physiology (n.) Look up physiology at
1560s, "study and description of natural objects," from Middle French physiologie or directly from Latin physiologia "natural science, study of nature," from Greek physiologia "natural science, inquiry into nature," from physio- "nature" (see physio-) + logia "study" (see -logy). Meaning "science of the normal function of living things" is attested from 1610s. Related: Physiologic; physiologist.
physiotherapy (n.) Look up physiotherapy at
1905, from physio- + therapy. Related: Physiotherapist.
physique (n.) Look up physique at
1826, from French physique, noun use of physique (adj.) "physical," from Latin physicus "natural, physics," from Greek physikos, from physis "nature" (see physic).
phyto- Look up phyto- at
word-forming element meaning "plant," from Greek phyton "plant," literally "that which has grown," from phyein "to grow" (see physic).
phytoplankton (n.) Look up phytoplankton at
1897, from phyto- + plankton.
pi (n.) Look up pi at
Greek letter, from Hebrew, literally "little mouth." As the name of the mathematical constant, from 1841 in English, used in Latin 1748 by Swiss mathematician Leonhart Euler (1707-1783), as an abbreviation of Greek periphereia "periphery." For the meaning "printer's term for mixed type," see pie (3).