Adolph Look up Adolph at Dictionary.com
masc. proper name, from Old High German Athalwolf "noble wolf," from athal "noble" (see atheling) + wolf (see wolf (n.)). The -ph is from the Latinized form of the name.
Adonai Look up Adonai at Dictionary.com
Old Testament word for "God," late 14c., from Medieval Latin, from Hebrew, literally "my lord," from adon (see Adonis) + suffix of 1st person.
Adonis (n.) Look up Adonis at Dictionary.com
"a beau," 1620s, from Greek Adonis, name of the youth beloved by Aphrodite, from Phoenician adon "lord," probably originally "ruler," from base a-d-n "to judge, rule." Adonai is the Hebrew cognate.
adopt (v.) Look up adopt at Dictionary.com
c.1500, a back-formation from adoption or else from Middle French adopter or directly from Latin adoptare "take by choice, choose for oneself, select, choose" (especially a child). Originally in English also of friends, fathers, citizens, etc. Sense of "to legally take as one's own child" and that of "to embrace, espouse" a practice, method, etc. are from c.1600. Related: Adopted; adopting.
adoption (n.) Look up adoption at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., from Old French adopcion or directly from Latin adoptionem (nominative adoptio), noun of action from past participle stem of adoptare "chose for oneself, take by choice, select, adopt," especially "to take into a family, adopt as a child," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + optare "choose, wish, desire" (see option (n.)).
adoptive (adj.) Look up adoptive at Dictionary.com
early 15c., from Middle French adoptif, from Latin adoptivus "pertaining to adoption," from stem of adoptere (see adopt).
adorable (adj.) Look up adorable at Dictionary.com
1610s, from French adorable, from Latin adorabilis "worthy of worship," from adorare (see adore). Weakened sense of "delightful, charming" is recorded from 1710. Related: Adorably; adorableness.
adoration (n.) Look up adoration at Dictionary.com
1540s, from Middle French adoration, from Latin adorationem (nominative adoratio) "worship, adoration," noun of action from past participle stem of adorare; see adore, the original sense of which is preserved in this word.
adore (v.) Look up adore at Dictionary.com
late 14c., aouren, "to worship, pay divine honors to, bow down before," from Old French aorer "to adore, worship, praise" (10c.), from Latin adorare "speak to formally, beseech, ask in prayer," in Late Latin "to worship," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + orare "speak formally, pray" (see orator). Meaning "to honor very highly" is attested from 1590s; weakened sense of "to be very fond of" emerged by 1880s. Related: Adored; adoring.
adoring (adj.) Look up adoring at Dictionary.com
1650s, "worshipping," present participle adjective from adore. Related: Adoringly.
adorn (v.) Look up adorn at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "to decorate, embellish," also "be an ornament to," from Old French aorner "to order, arrange, dispose, equip; adorn," from Latin adornare "equip, provide, embellish," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + ornare "prepare, furnish, adorn, fit out," from stem of ordo "order" (see order (n.)). The -d- was reinserted by French scribes 14c., in English from late 15c. Related: Adorned; adorning.
adornment (n.) Look up adornment at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "act of adorning;" also "a thing which adorns;" from Old French aornement "ornament, decoration," from aorner (see adorn).
Adrastea Look up Adrastea at Dictionary.com
"nemesis," daughter of Zeus, distributor of rewards and punishments, from Greek Adrasteia, literally "she from whom there is no escape," from adrastos "not running away," from privative prefix a- + stem of drasmos "a running away," related to dromos "course" (see dromedary).
adrenal (adj.) Look up adrenal at Dictionary.com
"of or near the kidneys," 1866, Modern Latin, from ad- + renalis "of the kidneys," from Latin renes "kidneys." Adrenal gland is from 1875.
adrenaline (n.) Look up adrenaline at Dictionary.com
also Adrenalin (trademark name), coined 1901 by Japanese chemist Jokichi Takamine (1853-1922), who discovered it, from Modern Latin adrenal (see adrenal) + chemical suffix -ine (2). Adrenaline rush was in use c.1970.
Adrian Look up Adrian at Dictionary.com
masc. proper name, from Latin Adrianus/Hadrianus, literally "of the Adriatic" (see Adriatic).
Adriatic Look up Adriatic at Dictionary.com
sea east of Italy, from Latin Adriaticus, from town of Atria (modern Atri) in Picenum, once a seaport but now more than 12 miles inland. The name is perhaps from atra, neuter of atrum "black," hence "the black city;" or else it represents Illyrian adur "water, sea."
adrift (adv.) Look up adrift at Dictionary.com
1620s, from a- (1) "on" + drift. Figurative use by 1680s.
adroit (adj.) Look up adroit at Dictionary.com
1650s, "dexterous," originally "rightly," from French adroit, from phrase à droit "according to right," from Old French à "to" (see ad-) + droit "right," from Late Latin directum "right, justice," accusative of Latin directus "straight" (see direct (v.)). Related: Adroitly; adroitness.
adsorb (v.) Look up adsorb at Dictionary.com
1882, transitive (intransitive use attested from 1919), back-formation from adsorption "condensation of gases on the surfaces of solids" (1882), coined in German from ad- + -sorption, abstracted from absorption. See absorb. Related: Adsorbent; adsorption.
adulate (v.) Look up adulate at Dictionary.com
1777, back-formation from adulation.
adulation (n.) Look up adulation at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "insincere praise," from Old French adulacion, from Latin adulationem (nominative adulatio) "a fawning; flattery, cringing courtesy," noun of action from past participle stem of aduliari "to flatter," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + ulos "tail," from PIE *ul- "the tail" (cognates: Sanskrit valah "tail," Lithuanian valai "horsehair of the tail"). The original notion is "to wag the tail" like a fawning dog (compare Greek sainein "to wag the tail," also "to flatter;" see also wheedle).
adult (adj.) Look up adult at Dictionary.com
1530s (but not common until mid-17c.), from Latin adultus "grown up, mature, adult, ripe," past participle of adolescere "grow up, mature" (see adolescent). As a euphemism for "pornographic," it dates to 1958 and does no honor to the word.
adult (n.) Look up adult at Dictionary.com
"adult person," 1650s, from adult (adj.).
adulterate (v.) Look up adulterate at Dictionary.com
1530s, back-formation from adulteration, or else from Latin adulteratus, past participle of adulterare "to falsify, corrupt," also "to commit adultery." Earlier verb was adulter (late 14c.). Related: Adulterated; adulterating.
adulteration (n.) Look up adulteration at Dictionary.com
c.1500, from Latin adulterationem (nominative adulteratio), noun of action from past participle stem of adulterare "corrupt, falsify; debauch; commit adultery," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + alterare "to alter" (see alter).
adulterer (n.) Look up adulterer at Dictionary.com
early 15c., earlier avouter (c.1300), avoutrer (late 14c.), agent noun from obsolete verb adulter "commit adultery; adulterate" (late 14c.), from Latin adulterare "to corrupt" (see adulteration).
adulteress (n.) Look up adulteress at Dictionary.com
late 14c., avoutresse, agent noun in fem. form from obsolete verb adulter (see adulterer).
adulterous (adj.) Look up adulterous at Dictionary.com
c.1400, avoutrious "addicted to adultery," from obsolete verb adulter (see adulterer) + -ous.
adultery (n.) Look up adultery at Dictionary.com
"voluntary violation of the marriage bed," c.1300, avoutrie, from Old French avouterie (12c.), noun of condition from avoutre, from Latin adulterare "to corrupt" (see adulteration). Modern spelling, with the re-inserted -d-, is from early 15c. (see ad-).

In Middle English, also "sex between husband and wife for recreational purposes; idolatry, perversion, heresy." Classified as single adultery (with an unmarried person) and double adultery (with a married person). Old English word was æwbryce "breach of law(ful marriage)" (compare German Ehebruch). Adultery Dune in Arizona corresponds to Navajo sei adilehe "adultery sand," where illicit lovers met privately.
adulthood (n.) Look up adulthood at Dictionary.com
1850, from adult + -hood.
adumbrate (v.) Look up adumbrate at Dictionary.com
"to outline, to sketch," 1580s, from Latin adumbratus "sketched, shadowed in outline," past participle of adumbrare "to represent (a thing) in outline" (see adumbration). Meaning "to overshadow" is 1660s. Related: Adumbrated; adumbrating.
adumbration (n.) Look up adumbration at Dictionary.com
1530s, from Latin adumbrationem (nominative adumbratio) "a sketch in shadow, sketch, outline," noun of action from past participle stem of adumbrare "to cast a shadow, overshadow, represent (a thing) in outline," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + umbrare "to cast in shadow," from PIE *andho- "blind, dark" (see umbrage).
advance (v.) Look up advance at Dictionary.com
mid-13c., avauncen, transitive, "improve (something), further the development of," from Old French avancier "move forward" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *abanteare (source of Italian avanzare, Spanish avanzar), from Late Latin abante "from before," composed of ab- "from" (see ab-) + ante "before, in front of, against" (see ante).

The -d- was inserted 16c. on mistaken notion that initial a- was from Latin ad-. From c.1300 as "to promote;" intransitive sense is mid-14c., "move forward." Meaning "to give money before it is legally due" is first attested 1670s. Related: Advanced; advancing. The adjective (in advance warning, etc.) is recorded from 1843.
advance (n.) Look up advance at Dictionary.com
c.1300, "boasting, ostentation," from advance (v.). Early 15c. as "advancement in rank, wealth, etc." Advances "amorous overtures" is from 1706.
advanced (adj.) Look up advanced at Dictionary.com
1530s, "far ahead in the course of actions or ideas," past participle adjective from advance (v.). Of studies, from 1790. Military use is from 1795. In late 19c. used especially in reference to views on women's equality.
advancement (n.) Look up advancement at Dictionary.com
c.1300, avauncement, "a raising to a higher rank," from Old French avancement "advancement, profit, advance payment," from avancer (see advance (v.)). Of money, from 1640s.
advantage (n.) Look up advantage at Dictionary.com
early 14c., avantage, "position of being in advance of another," from Old French avantage "advantage, profit, superiority," from avant "before," probably via an unrecorded Late Latin *abantaticum, from Latin abante (see advance).

The -d- is a 16c. intrusion on the analogy of Latin ad- words. Meaning "a favoring circumstance" (the opposite of disadvantage) is from late 15c. Tennis score sense is from 1640s, first recorded in writings of John Milton, of all people. Phrase to take advantage of is first attested late 14c.
advantageous (adj.) Look up advantageous at Dictionary.com
1590s, formed in English from advantage, or else from French avantageux (15c.), from avantage (see advantage). Related: Advantageously; advantageousness.
advent (n.) Look up advent at Dictionary.com
"important arrival," 1742, an extended sense of Advent "season before Christmas" (Old English), from Latin adventus "a coming, approach, arrival," in Church Latin "the coming of the Savior," from past participle stem of advenire "arrive, come to," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + venire "to come" (see venue). In English, also sometimes extended to the Pentecost.
Adventist Look up Adventist at Dictionary.com
1843, from Advent + -ist. Church Latin adventus was applied to the coming of the Savior, both the first or the anticipated second, hence Adventist, a name applied to millenarian sects, especially and originally the Millerites (U.S.).
adventitious (adj.) Look up adventitious at Dictionary.com
"of the nature of an addition from without," c.1600, from Medieval Latin adventitius "coming from abroad, extraneous," a corruption of Latin adventicius "foreign, strange, accidental," from advent- past participle stem of advenire "arrive" (see advent). Related: Adventitiously; adventitiousness.
adventure (n.) Look up adventure at Dictionary.com
c.1200, auenture "that which happens by chance, fortune, luck," from Old French aventure (11c.) "chance, accident, occurrence, event, happening," from Latin adventura (res) "(a thing) about to happen," from adventurus, future participle of advenire "to come to, reach, arrive at," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + venire "to come" (see venue).

Meaning developed through "risk/danger" (a trial of one's chances), c.1300, and "perilous undertaking" (late 14c.) and thence to "a novel or exciting incident" (1560s). Earlier it also meant "a wonder, a miracle; accounts of marvelous things" (13c.). The -d- was restored 15c.-16c. Venture is a 15c. variant.
adventure (v.) Look up adventure at Dictionary.com
c.1300, "to risk the loss of," from adventure (n.). Meaning "to take a chance" is early 14c. Related: Adventured; adventuring.
adventurer (n.) Look up adventurer at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "one who plays at games of chance," agent noun from adventure (v.). Meaning "one who seeks adventures" is from 1660s.
adventuresome (adj.) Look up adventuresome at Dictionary.com
1731, from adventure + -some (1).
adventurous (adj.) Look up adventurous at Dictionary.com
mid-14c., "hazardous" (also "occurring by chance," late 14c.), from Old French aventuros "chance, accidental, fortuitous;" of persons, "devoted to adventure" (Modern French aventureux), from aventure (see adventure (n.)). Sense evolution is through "rash, risk-taking" (c.1400), "daring, fond of adventure" (mid-15c.).
adverb (n.) Look up adverb at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Late Latin adverbium "adverb," literally "that which is added to a verb," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + verbum "verb, word" (see verb). Coined by Flavius Sosipater Charisius as a translation of Greek epirrhema "adverb," from epi- "upon, on" + rhema "verb."
adverbial (adj.) Look up adverbial at Dictionary.com
1610s, "pertaining to adverbs;" earlier it meant "fond of using adverbs" (1590s), from Late Latin adverbialis, from adverbium (see adverb). Related: Adverbially (mid-15c.).
adversarial (adj.) Look up adversarial at Dictionary.com
by 1892, from adversary + -al (1). Probably coined to avoid confusion which might arise with use of adversary (adj.), which is attested from late 14c. Related: Adversarially.