fractious (adj.) Look up fractious at
1725, from fraction in an obsolete sense of "a brawling, discord" (c.1500) + -ous; probably on model of captious. Related: Fractiously; fractiousness.
fracture (n.) Look up fracture at
early 15c., "a breaking of a bone," from Middle French fracture (14c.), from Latin fractura "a breach, break, cleft," from fractus, past participle of frangere "to break" (see fraction).
fracture (v.) Look up fracture at
1610s (implied in fractured), from fracture (n.). Related: Fracturing.
frag (v.) Look up frag at
by 1970, U.S. military slang, from slang noun shortening of fragmentation grenade (1918). Related: Fragged; fragging.
Fragging is a macabre ritual of Vietnam in which American enlisted men attempt to murder their superiors. The word comes from the nickname for hand grenades, a weapon popular with enlisted men because the evidence is destroyed with the consummation of the crime. ["Saturday Review," Jan. 8, 1972]
fragile (adj.) Look up fragile at
1510s, "liable to sin, morally weak;" c.1600, "liable to break;" a back-formation from fragility, or else from Middle French fragile (14c.), from Latin fragilis (see fragility). Transferred sense of "frail" (of persons) is from 1858.
fragility (n.) Look up fragility at
late 14c., "moral weakness," from Old French fragilité "debility, frailty" (12c.), from Latin fragilitatem (nominative fragilitas) "brittleness," from fragilis "brittle, easily broken," from root of frangere "to break" (see fraction). Meaning "quality of being easily broken" first recorded in English late 15c.
fragment (n.) Look up fragment at
early 15c., from Latin fragmentum "a fragment, remnant," literally "a piece broken off," from root of frangere "to break" (see fraction).
fragment (v.) Look up fragment at
by 1788 (implied in fragmented), from fragment (n.). Related: Fragmenting.
fragmentary (adj.) Look up fragmentary at
1835 (with an isolated use in Donne from 1611), from fragment + -ary.
fragmentation (n.) Look up fragmentation at
1881, from fragment + -ation. Fragmentation grenade attested from 1918.
fragrance (n.) Look up fragrance at
1660s, from French fragrance or directly from Late Latin fragrantia, from fragrantem (see fragrant).
fragrant (adj.) Look up fragrant at
mid-15c., from Latin fragrantem (nominative fragrans) "sweet-smelling," present participle of fragrare "emit (a sweet) odor," from PIE root *bhrag- "to smell" (cognates: Middle High German bræhen "to smell," Middle Dutch bracke, Old High German braccho "hound, setter;" see brach).
fraidy-cat (n.) Look up fraidy-cat at
"coward," by 1871, American English slang, from 'fraid, childish or dialectal (African, West Indies) pronunciation of afraid (by 1816), + cat.
frail (adj.) Look up frail at
mid-14c., "morally weak," from Old French fraile "weak, frail, sickly, infirm" (Modern French frêle), from Latin fragilis "easily broken" (see fragility). Sense of "liable to break" is first recorded in English late 14c. The U.S. slang noun meaning "a woman" is attested from 1908.
frailty (n.) Look up frailty at
mid-14c., from Old French fraileté "frailty, weakness," from Latin fragilitatem (nominative fragilitas), from fragilis "fragile" (see fragility). Related: Frailties.
fraktur (n.) Look up fraktur at
German black-lettering, 1886, from German Fraktur, from Latin fractura (see fracture (n.)); so called from its angular, "broken" letters. The style was commonly used in German printing from c.1540. Sense often transferred to Pennsylvania German arts that incorporate the lettering.
framboise (n.) Look up framboise at
1570s, from French framboise "raspberry" (12c.), usually explained as a corruption of Dutch braambezie (cognate with German brombeere "blackberry," literally "bramble-berry"). "But some French scholars doubt this" [OED].
frame (v.) Look up frame at
Old English framian "to profit, be helpful, avail, benefit," from fram "active, vigorous, bold," originally "going forward," from fram "forward; from" (see from).

Influenced by related Old English fremman "help forward, promote, further, do, perform, accomplish," and by Old Norse fremja "to further, execute." Sense focused in Middle English from "make ready" (mid-13c.) to "prepare timber for building" (late 14c.). Meaning "compose, devise" is first attested 1540s.

The criminal slang sense of "blame an innocent person" (1920s) is probably from earlier sense of "plot in secret" (1900), perhaps ultimately from meaning "fabricate a story with evil intent," first attested 1510s. Related: Framed; framing.
frame (n.) Look up frame at
c.1200, "profit, benefit;" mid-13c. "composition, plan," from frame (v.) and in part from Scandinavian (Old Norse frami "advancement"). In late 14c. it also meant "the rack."

Meaning "building" is from early 15c.; that of "border or case for a picture or pane of glass" is from c.1600. The meaning "established order, plan" and that of "human body" are both first recorded 1590s. Of bicycles, from 1871; of motor cars, from 1900. Frame of mind is from 1711. Frame of reference is 1897, from mechanics and graphing; the figurative sense is attested from 1924.
frame (adj.) Look up frame at
(of buildings), "made of wood," 1790, American English, from frame (n.).
framework (n.) Look up framework at
1640s, from frame (n.) + work (n.). Figurative sense is from 1816.
franc (n.) Look up franc at
French coin, late 14c., from Medieval Latin Francorum Rex "King of the Franks," inscribed on gold coins first made during the reign of Jean le Bon (1350-64). An official monetary unit of France from 1795.
franc-tireur (n.) Look up franc-tireur at
"sharpshooter of the irregular infantry," 1808, French, literally "free-shooter," from franc "free" (see frank) + tireur "shooter," from tirer "to draw, shoot" (see tirade). A term from the French Revolution.
Frances Look up Frances at
fem. proper name, from French, from Old French Franceise (Modern French Françoise), fem. of Franceis (see Francis).
franchise (n.) Look up franchise at
late 13c., from Old French franchise "freedom, exemption; right, privilege" (12c.), from variant stem of franc "free" (see frank (adj.)). Sense narrowed 18c. to "particular legal privilege," then "right to vote" (1790). Meaning "authorization by a company to sell its products or services" is from 1959.
franchise (v.) Look up franchise at
late 14c., from Old French franchiss-, past participle stem of franchir "to free" (12c.), from franc (see frank (adj.)). Franchising is from 1570s; the commercial licensing sense is from 1966. Related: Franchisee; franchiser; franchisor.
Francis Look up Francis at
masc. proper name, from French François, from Old French Franceis, from Late Latin Franciscus, literally "Frankish;" cognate with French and frank.
Franciscan Look up Franciscan at
1590s, "friar of the order founded in 1209 by St. Francis (Medieval Latin Franciscus) of Assisi" (1182-1226). Also as an adjective.
Franco- Look up Franco- at
word-forming element meaning "French," from Medieval Latin comb. form of Franci "the Franks," hence, by extension, "the French" (see Frank). Used in forming English compound words from early 18c.
Francophile (adj.) Look up Francophile at
1875, from Franco- + -phile. "A newspaper word" [OED]. Its opposite, Francophobe, is recorded from 1890 (implied in Francophobic; Francophobia is from 1862).
Francophone (adj.) Look up Francophone at
1900, from Franco- + -phone.
frangible (adj.) Look up frangible at
early 15c., from Middle French frangible, from Medieval Latin frangibilis, from Latin frangere "to break" (see fraction).
frangipani (n.) Look up frangipani at
type of shrub, 1864; earlier frangipane, a type of perfume (1670s), from French frangipane (16c.), said to be from Frangipani, the family name of the Italian inventor.
FRANGIPANI, an illustrious and powerful Roman House, which traces its origin to the 7th c., and attained the summit of its glory in the 11th and 12th centuries. ... The origin of the name Frangipani is attributed to the family's benevolent distribution of bread in time of famine. ["Chambers's Encyclopædia," 1868]
Franglais (n.) Look up Franglais at
"French marred by many English words," 1959, from French, from français "French" + anglais "English."
frank (adj.) Look up frank at
c.1300, "free, liberal, generous," from Old French franc "free (not servile), sincere, genuine, open, gracious; worthy" (12c.), from Medieval Latin Franc "a freeman, a Frank" (see Frank). The connection is that only Franks, as the conquering class, had the status of freemen. Sense of "outspoken" first recorded in English 1540s.
Frank Look up Frank at
one of the Germanic people that conquered Celtic northern Gaul from the Romans c.500 C.E. and made it into France, from Frankish *Frank (cognate with Old High German Franko, Old English Franca). The origin of the ethnic name is uncertain; it traditionally is said to be from the old Germanic word *frankon "javelin, lance" (compare Old English franca), their preferred weapon, but the reverse may be the case. Compare also Saxon, traditionally from root of Old English seax "knife." In the Levant, this was the name given to anyone of Western nationality (compare Feringhee and lingua franca).
frank (n.) Look up frank at
short for frankfurter, by 1916, American English. Franks and beans attested by 1953.
frank (v.) Look up frank at
"to free a letter for carriage or an article for publication," 1708, from shortened form of French affranchir, from the same source as frank (adj.). Related: Franked; franking.
Frankenstein Look up Frankenstein at
allusive use dates to 1838, from Baron Frankenstein (German, "free stone"), character in Mary Shelley's 1818 novel "Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus." Commonly used, mistakenly, as the proper name of the monster he created, and thus franken- extended 1990s as a prefix to mean "non-natural."
frankfurter (n.) Look up frankfurter at
"hot dog," 1894, American English, from German Frankfurter "of Frankfurt," because a smoked-beef-and-pork sausage somewhat like a U.S. hot dog was originally made in Germany, where it was associated with the city of Frankfurt am Main (literally "ford of the Franks on the River Main"). Attested from 1877 as Frankfort sausage.
frankincense (n.) Look up frankincense at
late 14c., apparently from Old French franc encense, from franc "noble, true" (see frank (adj.)), in this case probably signifying "of the highest quality" + encens "incense" (see incense (n.)).
Frankish (adj.) Look up Frankish at
1802, from Frank + -ish. As the name of the West Germanic language spoken by the ancient Franks, from 1863. (Frenkis is recorded c.1400.). The language influenced French, especially in the northern regions from which the Normans conquered England in 1066.
Franklin Look up Franklin at
surname attested from late 12c., Middle English Frankeleyn, from Anglo-French fraunclein "a land-owner of free but not noble birth," from Old French franc "free" (see frank (adj.)), with Germanic suffix also found in chamberlain.

The Franklin stove (1787) so called because it was invented by U.S. scientist/politician Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790). In early 19c., lightning rods often were called Franklins.
frankly (adv.) Look up frankly at
1530s, from frank (adj.) + -ly (2).
frankness (n.) Look up frankness at
1550s, from frank (adj.) + -ness.
frantic (adj.) Look up frantic at
mid-14c., "insane," unexplained variant of Middle English frentik (see frenetic). Transferred meaning "affected by wild excitement" is from late 15c. Of the adverbial forms, frantically (1749) is later than franticly (1540s).
frap (v.) Look up frap at
early 14c., from Old French fraper (12c., Modern French frapper) "to strike, hit beat," cognate with Italian frappare "to strike," of unknown origin, perhaps imitative (compare rap (n.)). Nautical sense of "bind tightly" is from 1540s. Related: Frapped; frapping.
frappe (n.) Look up frappe at
"iced drink," 1922, American English (earlier as an adjective, "iced," 1848), from French frappé, from past participle of frapper "to chill," literally "to beat," from Old French fraper "to hit, strike" (see frap (v.)).
frass (n.) Look up frass at
insect excrement, 1854, from German frasz, from root of fressen "to devour, to eat as a beast does" (see fret (v.)).
frat (n.) Look up frat at
student slang shortening of fraternity, by 1888.