Athenian (n.) Look up Athenian at Dictionary.com
Old English Atheniense (plural noun), from Latin Atheniensis, from Athenae (see Athens).
Athens Look up Athens at Dictionary.com
city of ancient Attica, capital of modern Greece, from Greek Athenai (plural because the city had several distinct parts), traditionally derived from Athena, but probably assimilated from a lost name in a pre-Hellenic language.
atheroma (n.) Look up atheroma at Dictionary.com
"encysted tumor," 1706, medical Latin, from Greek atheroma, from athere "groats, porridge" (related to ather "chaff"), in reference to what is inside. For ending, see -oma.
atherosclerosis (n.) Look up atherosclerosis at Dictionary.com
1908, from atherosklerose, coined in German 1904; see atheroma + sclerosis.
athetosis (n.) Look up athetosis at Dictionary.com
1871, from Greek athetos "not fixed, without position or place, set aside" + -osis. Coined by U.S. nerve specialist William Alexander Hammond (1828-1900).
athlete (n.) Look up athlete at Dictionary.com
early 15c., from Latin athleta "a wrestler, athlete, combatant in public games," from Greek athletes "prizefighter, contestant in the games," agent noun from athlein "to contest for a prize," related to athlos "a contest" and athlon "a prize," which is of unknown origin. Before 1750, usually in Latin form. In this sense, Old English had plegmann "play-man." Athlete's foot first recorded 1928, for an ailment that has been around much longer.
athletic (adj.) Look up athletic at Dictionary.com
1630s (athletical is from 1590s), "pertaining to an athlete," from Latin athleticus, from Greek athletikos, from athletes (see athlete). Meaning "strong of body; vigorous; lusty; robust" [Johnson, who spells it athletick] is from 1650s.
athleticism (n.) Look up athleticism at Dictionary.com
1835, from athletic + -ism.
athletics (n.) Look up athletics at Dictionary.com
c. 1730, from athletic; also see -ics. Probably formed on model of gymnastics.
athrob (adj.) Look up athrob at Dictionary.com
1857, from a- (1) + throb. Related: Athrobbing.
athwart (adv.) Look up athwart at Dictionary.com
late 15c., from a- (1) + thwart.
atilt (adv.) Look up atilt at Dictionary.com
1560s, from a- (1) + tilt (n.).
Atlantic Look up Atlantic at Dictionary.com
late 14c., occean of Athlant "sea off the west coast of Africa" (early 15c. as occean Atlantyke), from Latin Atlanticus, from Greek Atlantikos "of Atlas," adjectival form of Atlas (genitive Atlantos), in reference to Mount Atlas in Mauritania (see Atlas). Applied to the whole ocean since c. 1600.
Atlantis Look up Atlantis at Dictionary.com
mythical island-nation, from Greek Atlantis, literally "daughter of Atlas." All references trace to Plato's dialogues "Timaeus" and "Critias," both written c. 360 B.C.E.
Atlas Look up Atlas at Dictionary.com
1580s, Titan, son of Iapetus and Clymene, supposed to uphold the pillars of heaven, which was his punishment for being the war leader of the Titans in the struggle with the Olympian gods. The name in Greek perhaps means "The Bearer (of the Heavens)," from a-, copulative prefix, + stem of tlenai "to bear," from PIE root *tele- "to lift, support, weigh." Mount Atlas, in Mauritania, was important in Greek cosmology as a support of the heavens.
atlas (n.) Look up atlas at Dictionary.com
"collection of maps in a volume," 1636, first in reference to the English translation of "Atlas, sive cosmographicae meditationes de fabrica mundi" (1585) by Flemish geographer Gerhardus Mercator (1512-1594), who might have been the first to use this word in this way. A picture of the Titan Atlas holding up the world appeared on the frontispiece of this and other early map collections.
atlatl (n.) Look up atlatl at Dictionary.com
Native American throwing stick, 1871, from Nahuatl (Aztecan) atlatl "spear-thrower."
ATM Look up ATM at Dictionary.com
1976, acronym for automated teller machine (1974), which was developed in modern form c. 1968.
atman (n.) Look up atman at Dictionary.com
1785, from Sanskrit atma "essence, breath, soul," from PIE *etmen "breath" (a root found in Sanskrit and Germanic; cognates: Old English æðm, Dutch adem, Old High German atum "breath," Old English eþian, Dutch ademen "to breathe").
atmosphere (n.) Look up atmosphere at Dictionary.com
1630s, atmosphaera (modern form from 1670s), from Modern Latin atmosphaera, from atmo-, comb. form of Greek atmos "vapor, steam" + spharia "sphere" (see sphere). Greek atmos is from PIE *awet-mo-, from root *wet- (1) "to blow" (also "to inspire, spiritually arouse;" see wood (adj.)). First used in English in connection with the Moon, which, as it turns out, practically doesn't have one.
It is observed in the solary eclipses, that there is sometimes a great trepidation about the body of the moon, from which we may likewise argue an atmosphaera, since we cannot well conceive what so probable a cause there should be of such an appearance as this, Quod radii solares a vaporibus lunam ambitntibus fuerint intercisi, that the sun-beams were broken and refracted by the vapours that encompassed the moon. [Rev. John Wilkins, "Discovery of New World or Discourse tending to prove that it probable there may be another World in the Moon," 1638]
Figurative sense of "surrounding influence, mental or moral environment" is c. 1800.
atmospheric (adj.) Look up atmospheric at Dictionary.com
1783, from atmosphere + -ic. In a sense of "creating a mood or mental environment" it is from 1908. Atmospherics "disturbances in wireless communication" is from 1905.
atoll (n.) Look up atoll at Dictionary.com
1620s, atollon, from Malayam atolu "reef," probably from adal "closing, uniting." Popularized in present form by Darwin's writings.
atom (n.) Look up atom at Dictionary.com
late 15c., as a hypothetical indivisible body, the building block of the universe, from Latin atomus (especially in Lucretius) "indivisible particle," from Greek atomos "uncut, unhewn; indivisible," from a- "not" + tomos "a cutting," from temnein "to cut" (see tome). An ancient term of philosophical speculation (in Leucippus, Democritus), revived 1805 by British chemist John Dalton. In late classical and medieval use also a unit of time, 22,560 to the hour. Atom bomb is from 1945 as both a noun and a verb; compare atomic.
atomic (adj.) Look up atomic at Dictionary.com
1670s as a philosophical term (see atomistic); scientific sense dates from 1811, from atom + -ic. Atomic number is from 1821; atomic mass is from 1848. Atomic energy first recorded 1906 in modern sense (as intra-atomic energy from 1903).
March, 1903, was an historic date for chemistry. It is, also, as we shall show, a date to which, in all probability, the men of the future will often refer as the veritable beginning of the larger powers and energies that they will control. It was in March, 1903, that Curie and Laborde announced the heat-emitting power of radium. [Robert Kennedy Duncan, "The New Knowledge," 1906]
Atomic bomb first recorded 1914 in writings of H.G. Wells, who thought of it as a bomb "that would continue to explode indefinitely."
When you can drop just one atomic bomb and wipe out Paris or Berlin, war will have become monstrous and impossible. [S. Strunsky, "Yale Review," January 1917]
Atomic Age is from 1945. Atomical is from 1640s.
atomies (n.) Look up atomies at Dictionary.com
1590s, "atoms," also "diminutive beings," from atomy, from Latin atomi, plural of atomus (see atom), but taken as a singular in English and re-pluralized in the native way. Perhaps also in some cases a plural of atomy (from misdivision of anatomy).
atomistic (adj.) Look up atomistic at Dictionary.com
1809, in reference to the classical philosophical doctrine of atomism (1670s); modern philosophical sense (logical atomism) traces to 1914 and Bertrand Russell.
atomization (n.) Look up atomization at Dictionary.com
1866, noun of action from atomize.
atomize (v.) Look up atomize at Dictionary.com
"reduce to atoms," 1845; "reduce a liquid to a very fine mist," 1865, verb formed from atom + -ize. Related: Atomized; atomizing. Originally in reference to medical treatment for injured or diseased lungs; sense of "to destroy with atomic weapons" is from 1945.
atomizer (n.) Look up atomizer at Dictionary.com
1865, agent noun from atomize.
Aton Look up Aton at Dictionary.com
variant of Aten.
atonal (adj.) Look up atonal at Dictionary.com
1922, from a- "not" (see a- (2)) + tonal.
atonality (n.) Look up atonality at Dictionary.com
1950; see atonal + -ity.
atone (v.) Look up atone at Dictionary.com
1550s, from adverbial phrase atonen (c. 1300) "in accord," literally "at one," a contraction of at and one. It retains the older pronunciation of one. The phrase perhaps is modeled on Latin adunare "unite," from ad- "to, at" (see ad-) + unum "one." Related: Atoned; atoning.
atonement (n.) Look up atonement at Dictionary.com
1510s, "condition of being at one (with others)," from atone + -ment. Meaning "reconciliation" (especially of sinners with God) is from 1520s; that of "propitiation of an offended party" is from 1610s.
atop (adv.) Look up atop at Dictionary.com
1650s, from a- (1) + top. Two words or hyphenated at first; not fully established as one word till late 19c.
atopic (adj.) Look up atopic at Dictionary.com
1923, from atopia (see atopy) + -ic.
atopy (n.) Look up atopy at Dictionary.com
1923, coined by Edward D. Perry, professor of Greek at Columbia University, at the request of medical men, from Greek atopia "unusualness, strangeness, a being out of the way," from atopos "out of place, strange, odd, eccentric," from a-, privative prefix (see a- (3)), + topos "place" (see topos).
ATP Look up ATP at Dictionary.com
abbreviation of adenosine triphosphate, attested from 1939.
atrabiliary (adj.) Look up atrabiliary at Dictionary.com
1725, from Medieval Latin atrabilarius; see atrabilious.
atrabilious (adj.) Look up atrabilious at Dictionary.com
1650s, from Latin atra bilis, translating Greek melankholia "black bile" (see melancholy; also compare bile). Atra is fem. of ater "black, dark, gloomy," perhaps related to root of atrocity. Related: Atrabiliousness.
atremble (adv.) Look up atremble at Dictionary.com
1852, from a- (1) + tremble (v.).
atresia (n.) Look up atresia at Dictionary.com
"occlusion of a natural passage in the body," 1807, from Modern Latin atresia, from Greek atretos "not perforated," from a-, privative prefix, + tresis "perforation," from PIE *tere- (1) "to rub, turn," with derivatives referring to boring and drilling (see throw (v.)).
Atreus Look up Atreus at Dictionary.com
in Greek mythology, the son of Pelops, father of Agamemnon and Menelaus.
atria (n.) Look up atria at Dictionary.com
classical plural of atrium.
atrial (adj.) Look up atrial at Dictionary.com
by 1860 in the medical sense, from atrium + -al (1).
atrium (n.) Look up atrium at Dictionary.com
1570s, from Latin atrium "central court or main room of an ancient Roman house, room which contains the hearth," sometimes said (on authority of Varro, "De Lingua Latina") to be an Etruscan word, but perhaps from PIE *ater- "fire," on notion of "place where smoke from the hearth escapes" (through a hole in the roof). Anatomical sense of "either of the upper cavities of the heart" first recorded 1870. Meaning "skylit central court in a public building" first attested 1967.
atrocious (adj.) Look up atrocious at Dictionary.com
1660s, from stem of Latin atrox "fierce, savage, cruel" (see atrocity) + -ous. Colloquial sense "very bad" is late 19c. Related: Atrociously; atrociousness.
atrocity (n.) Look up atrocity at Dictionary.com
1530s, from Middle French atrocité or directly from Latin atrocitatem (nominative atrocitas) "cruelty, fierceness, harshness," noun of quality from atrox "fierce, cruel, frightful," from PIE *atro-ek-, from root *ater- "fire" (see atrium) + *okw- "see" (see eye (n.)); thus "of fiery or threatening appearance." The meaning "an atrocious deed" is from 1793.
atrophic (adj.) Look up atrophic at Dictionary.com
1819; see atrophy + -ic.
atrophy (n.) Look up atrophy at Dictionary.com
"a wasting away through lack of nourishment," 1620s (atrophied is from 1590s), from French atrophie, from Late Latin atrophia, from Greek atrophia "a wasting away," noun of state from atrophos "ill-fed, un-nourished," from a- "not" + trophe "nourishment," from trephein "to fatten" (see -trophy).