socialism (n.) Look up socialism at Dictionary.com
1837, from French socialisme (1832) or formed in English (based on socialist) from social (adj.) + -ism. Perhaps first in reference to Robert Owen's communes. "Pierre Leroux (1797-1871), idealistic social reformer and Saint-Simonian publicist, expressly claims to be the originator of the word socialisme" [Klein, also see OED discussion]. The word begins to be used in French in the modern sense c.1835.
socialist (n.) Look up socialist at Dictionary.com
"one who advocates socialism," 1827, from French socialiste, or else a native formation based on it, in reference to the teachings of Comte de Saint-Simon, founder of French socialism. The word begins to be used in French in the modern sense c.1835. Socialista, with a different sense, was applied 18c. to followers and pupils of Dutch jurist Grotius (1583-1645), from his use of socialistus. Socialist realism attested from 1934.
I find that socialism is often misunderstood by its least intelligent supporters and opponents to mean simply unrestrained indulgence of our natural propensity to heave bricks at respectable persons. [George Bernard Shaw, "An Unsocial Socialist," 1900]



Prison is a Socialist's Paradise, where equality prevails, everything is supplied and competition is eliminated. [Elbert Hubbard, "The Note Book," 1927]
socialistic (adj.) Look up socialistic at Dictionary.com
1839, from socialist + -ic. Related: Socialistically.
socialite (n.) Look up socialite at Dictionary.com
1928, first in "Time" magazine, from social (adj.) in the "pertaining to high society" sense, perhaps as a play on social light, in imitation of words in -ite (1).
sociality (n.) Look up sociality at Dictionary.com
1640s, from French socialité or directly from Latin socialitas "fellowship, sociableness," from socialis (see social (adj.)).
socialization (n.) Look up socialization at Dictionary.com
1839, in reference to personal associations; 1884 in reference to socialism; noun of action from socialize.
socialize (v.) Look up socialize at Dictionary.com
1828, "to render social," from social (adj.). Meaning "to be sociable, to mingle" is recorded from 1895. Meaning "to make socialistic" is from 1846. Related: Socialized; socializing. The phrasing in socialized medicine is by 1912.
societal (adj.) Look up societal at Dictionary.com
1873, from society (adj.) + -al (1). Related: Societally. Earlier adjective was societarian (1822) "of or pertaining to society."
society (n.) Look up society at Dictionary.com
1530s, "companionship, friendly association with others," from Old French societe "company" (12c., Modern French société), from Latin societatem (nominative societas) "fellowship, association, alliance, union, community," from socius "companion" (see social (adj.)).

Meaning "group, club" is from 1540s, originally of associations of persons for some specific purpose. Meaning "people bound by neighborhood and intercourse aware of living together in an ordered community" is from 1630s. Sense of "the more cultivated part of any community" first recorded 1823, hence "fashionable people and their doings." The Society Islands were named 1769 by Cook on his third Pacific voyage in honor of the Royal Society, which financed his travels across the world to observe the transit of Venus.
Socinian Look up Socinian at Dictionary.com
1640s (n.); 1690s (adj.), in reference to followers or doctrines of Faustus Socinus, Latinized name of Fausto Sozzini (1539-1604), Italian anti-trinitarian theologian who held Christ to be human, if divinely endowed, and the Holy Spirit to be divine energy, not a person. He broke with the Church and organized the Polish Brethren.
socio- Look up socio- at Dictionary.com
word-forming element meaning "social, of society; social and," also "having to do with sociology," from combining form of Latin socius "companion, ally, associate, fellow, sharer" (see social (adj.)). Common in compounds since c.1880.
socio-economic (adj.) Look up socio-economic at Dictionary.com
also socioeconomic, 1875; see socio- + economic.
socio-political (adj.) Look up socio-political at Dictionary.com
also sociopolitical, 1842, from socio- + political.
sociobiology (n.) Look up sociobiology at Dictionary.com
"study of the biological basis of social behavior," 1946, from socio- + biology. Related: Sociobiological.
sociological (adj.) Look up sociological at Dictionary.com
1861; see sociology + -ical. Related: Sociologically.
sociologist (n.) Look up sociologist at Dictionary.com
1843, from sociology + -ist.
sociology (n.) Look up sociology at Dictionary.com
the science of social phenomena, 1842, from French sociologie, a hybrid coined 1830 by French philosopher Isidore Auguste Comte (1798-1857), from Latin socius "associate" (see social (adj.)) + Greek-derived suffix -logie (see -logy).
sociopath (n.) Look up sociopath at Dictionary.com
1930, coined by psychologist G.E. Partridge from socio- on model of psychopath.
sock (n.1) Look up sock at Dictionary.com
"knitted or woven covering for the foot, short stocking," early 14c., from Old English socc "slipper, light shoe," from Latin soccus "slipper, light low-heeled shoe," probably a variant of Greek sykchos, word for a kind of shoe, perhaps from Phrygian or another Asiatic language. The Latin word was borrowed generally in West Germanic (Middle Dutch socke, Dutch sok, Old High German soc, German Socke). To knock the socks off (someone) "beat thoroughly" is recorded from 1845, American English colloquial. Teen slang sock hop is c.1950, from notion of dancing without shoes.
sock (v.2) Look up sock at Dictionary.com
"to stash (money) away as savings," 1942, American English, from the notion of hiding one's money in a sock (see sock (n.1)).
sock (v.1) Look up sock at Dictionary.com
1700, "to beat, hit hard, pitch into," of uncertain origin. To sock it to (someone) first recorded 1877.
sock (n.2) Look up sock at Dictionary.com
"a blow, a hit with the fist," 1700, from or related to sock (v.1).
sockdolager (n.) Look up sockdolager at Dictionary.com
1830, "a decisive blow" (also, figuratively "a conclusive argument"), fanciful formation from sock (v.1) "hit hard," perhaps via a comical mangling of doxology, on a notion of "finality." The meaning "something exceptional" is attested from 1838.

Sockdologising likely was nearly the last word President Abraham Lincoln heard. During the performance of Tom Taylor's "Our American Cousin," assassin John Wilkes Booth (who knew the play well) waited for the laugh-line "Well, I guess I know enough to turn you inside out, you sockdologising old man-trap." Amid the noise as the audience responded, Booth fired the fatal shot.
socket (n.) Look up socket at Dictionary.com
c.1300, "spearhead" (originally one shaped like a plowshare), from Anglo-French soket "spearhead, plowshare" (mid-13c.), diminutive of Old French soc "plowshare," from Vulgar Latin *soccus, perhaps from a Gaulish source, from Celtic *sukko- (cognates: Welsh swch "plowshare," Middle Irish soc "plowshare"), properly "hog's snout," from PIE *su- "pig" (cognates: Latin sus "swine;" see sow (n.) "female pig").

Meaning "hollow part or piece for receiving and holding something" first recorded early 15c.; anatomical sense is from c.1600; domestic electrical sense first recorded 1885. Socket wrench is attested from 1837. The verb is 1530s, from the noun. Related: Socketed; socketing.
Socratic (adj.) Look up Socratic at Dictionary.com
1630s (Socratical is from 1580s), "of or pertaining to Greek philosopher Socrates" (469-399 B.C.E.), especially in reference to his method of eliciting truth by question and answer, from Latin Socraticus, from Greek Sokratikos "pertaining to Socrates or his school." His name is Greek Sokrates, literally "having safe might."
sod (n.1) Look up sod at Dictionary.com
"turf, slice of earth with grass on it," mid-15c., apparently from Middle Dutch sode "turf," or Middle Low German sode, both related to Old Frisian satha "sod," all of uncertain origin. Perhaps the notion is water saturation and the group is related to sog. The (old) sod "Ireland" is from 1812.
sod (n.2) Look up sod at Dictionary.com
term of abuse, 1818, short for sodomite (also see sodomy). British colloquial sod-all "nothing" is attested from 1958.
sod (v.1) Look up sod at Dictionary.com
c.1400, "to cover with sod," from sod (n.). Related: Sodded; sodding.
sod (v.2) Look up sod at Dictionary.com
in sod off (1960), British slang term of dismissal; see sod (n.2).
soda (n.) Look up soda at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "sodium carbonate," an alkaline substance extracted from certain ashes (now made artificially), from Italian sida (or Medieval Latin soda) "a kind of saltwort," from which soda was obtained, of uncertain origin. Perhaps it is from a Catalan sosa, attested from late 13c., of uncertain origin. Proposed Arabic sources in a name of a variety of saltwort have not been attested and that theory is no longer considered valid. Another theory, considered far-fetched in some quarters, traces it to Medieval Latin sodanum "a headache remedy," ultimately from Arabic suda "splitting headache."

Soda is found naturally in alkaline lakes, in deposits where such lakes have dried, and from ash produced by burning various seaside plants. A major trading commodity in the medieval Mediterranean, since commercial manufacture of it began in France in late 18c., these other sources have been abandoned. Washing soda (sodium carbonate) is commonly distinguished from baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). A soda-cracker (1863) has baking soda as an ingredient.

The meaning "carbonated water" is first recorded 1834, a shortening of soda water (1802) "water into which carbonic acid has been forced under pressure." "It rarely contains soda in any form; but the name originally applied when sodium carbonate was contained in it has been retained" [Century Dictionary, 1902]. Since 19c. typically flavored and sweetened with syrups. First record of soda pop is from 1863, and the most frequent modern use of the word is as a shortening of this or other terms for "flavored, sweetened soda water." Compare pop (n.1). Soda fountain is from 1824; soda jerk first attested 1915 (soda-jerker is from 1883). Colloquial pronunciation "sody" is represented in print from 1900 (U.S. Midwestern).
sodality (n.) Look up sodality at Dictionary.com
"companionship, fellowship, association with others," c.1600, from Middle French sodalité or directly from Latin sodalitatem (nominative sodalitas) "companionship, a brotherhood, association, fellowship," from sodalis "companion," perhaps literally "one's own, relative," related to suescere "to accustom," from PIE *swedh-, extended form of root *s(w)e-, pronoun of the third person and reflexive (see idiom). Especially of religious guilds in the Catholic Church.
sodbuster (n.) Look up sodbuster at Dictionary.com
"pioneer farmer in a cattle-grazing region," originally in the U.S. West, 1897, from sod (n.1) + agent noun from bust (v.).
sodden (adj.) Look up sodden at Dictionary.com
"soaked or softened in water," 1820, earlier "resembling something that has been boiled a long time" (1590s), originally "boiled" (c.1300), from Old English soden "boiled," strong past participle of seoþan "to cook, boil" (see seethe). For sense evolution from "heat in water" to "immerse in water" compare bath.
sodium (n.) Look up sodium at Dictionary.com
metallic alkaline element, 1807, coined by English chemist Humphry Davy from soda; so called because the element was isolated from caustic soda (sodium hydroxide). The chemical symbol Na is from natrium, alternative name for the element proposed by Berzelius from natron, a name of a type of soda.
Sodom (n.) Look up Sodom at Dictionary.com
"wicked or corrupt place," 1640s, from the sinful city in ancient Palestine, said to have been destroyed, with neighboring Gomorrah, by fire from heaven (Gen. xviii-xix). From Hebrew s'dom, of unknown origin.
sodomise (v.) Look up sodomise at Dictionary.com
chiefly British English spelling of sodomize. For suffix, see -ize. Related: Sodomised; sodomising.
sodomite (n.) Look up sodomite at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Old French Sodomite "inhabitant of Sodom; sodomite," also a general term of abuse, or directly from Late Latin Sodomita, from Greek Sodomites "inhabitant of Sodom" (see Sodom, also sodomy). Related: Sodomitical. Old English had adjective sodomitisc. The King James Bible (1611) has fem. form sodomitesse in a marginal note to "whore" in Deut. xxiii:17.
sodomize (v.) Look up sodomize at Dictionary.com
1859, "to demoralize;" see sodomy + -ize. By 1895 in a specific sexual sense (translating Greek paiderastein). Related: Sodomized; sodomizing. In Dutch slang, besodemieteren means "to deceive," and evidently is built from the traditional notion of "corruption" in Sodom.
sodomy (n.) Look up sodomy at Dictionary.com
c.1300, "unnatural sexual relations," such as those imputed to the inhabitants of Biblical Sodom, especially between persons of the same sex but also with beasts, from Old French sodomie, from Late Latin peccatum Sodomiticum "anal sex," literally "the sin of Sodom," from Latin Sodoma. In Middle English also synne Sodomyke (early 14c.).
soever (adv.) Look up soever at Dictionary.com
1550s, from so + ever. "A word generally used in composition to extend or render indefinite the sense of such words as who, what, where, when, how, etc. ...." [Century Dictionary].
sofa (n.) Look up sofa at Dictionary.com
1620s, "raised section of a floor, covered with carpets and cushions," from Turkish sofa, from Arabic suffah "bench of stone or wood; a couch." Meaning "long stuffed seat for reclining" is recorded from 1717.
sofa-bed (n.) Look up sofa-bed at Dictionary.com
1805, from sofa + bed (n.).
soffit (n.) Look up soffit at Dictionary.com
architectural term referring to under-faces, 1610s, from Italian soffita, fem. of soffitto "ceiling," noun use of adjective meaning "fixed beneath," from Vulgar Latin *suffictus "fastened below," from Latin suffixus (see suffix (n.)).
Sofia Look up Sofia at Dictionary.com
Bulgarian capital, Roman Serdica, from the Thracian Serdi people who lived thereabouts. Conquered by the Bulgarians 9c. who altered the name by folk-etymology to Sredeti, which in their tongue meant "center, middle." It got its current name 14c. when the Turks conquered it and converted the 6c. church of St. Sophia into a mosque; the name thence extended to the whole city.
soft (adj.) Look up soft at Dictionary.com
Old English softe, earlier sefte, "gentle, mild-natured; easeful, comfortable, calm, undisturbed; luxurious," from West Germanic *samfti, from Proto-Germanic *samftijaz "level, even, smooth, gentle, soft" (cognates: Old Saxon safti, Old High German semfti, German sanft; and from a variant form with -ch- for -f-, Middle Dutch sachte, Dutch zacht, German sacht), from root *som- "fitting, agreeable."

From c.1200 of material things, "not stiff, not coarse, fine; yielding to weight." From late 14c. of wind, rain, etc. Of sounds, "quiet, not loud," from early 13c. Of words, "mild, restrained; courteous" mid-14c. From late 14c. as "indulgent," also "physically feeble; easily overcome, lacking manly courage." From 1755 of water ("relatively free from mineral salts"), from 1789 of coal. Meaning "foolish, simple, silly" is attested from 1620s; earlier "easily moved or swayed; soft-hearted, sympathetic; docile" (early 13c.). In reference to drinks, "non-alcoholic" from 1880. As an adverb, Old English softe "gently;" late 13c. as "quietly." As an interjection from 1540s.

Soft landing is from 1958 and the U.S. space program. Adjective soft-core (in reference to pornography) is from 1966 (see hardcore). Soft rock as a music style is attested from 1969. Soft sell is from 1955. Soft-shoe as a dancing style is attested from 1927. Soft-boiled is from 1757 of eggs; of persons, ideas, etc., 1930 (compare half-baked). Soft-focus (adj.) of camera shots is from 1917. The softer sex "women collectively" is from 1640s.
soft-hearted (adj.) Look up soft-hearted at Dictionary.com
also softhearted, 1590s, from soft (adj.) "tender" + hearted. Related: Soft-heartedly; soft-heartedness.
soft-pedal (v.) Look up soft-pedal at Dictionary.com
"to tone down," 1915, figurative use from the noun (1856) in reference to the left foot-lever of a piano, which makes it quieter among other effects; from soft (adj.) + pedal (n.).
soft-shelled (adj.) Look up soft-shelled at Dictionary.com
1611, from soft (adj.) + shell (n.).
soft-soap (n.) Look up soft-soap at Dictionary.com
1630s, from soft (adj.) + soap (n.). Figurative sense "flattery" is recorded from 1830.
soft-spoken (adj.) Look up soft-spoken at Dictionary.com
c.1600, from soft (adj.) + spoken.