gallimaufry (n.) Look up gallimaufry at
"a medley, hash, hodge-podge," 1550s, from French galimafrée "hash, ragout, dish made of odds and ends," from Old French galimafree, calimafree "sauce made of mustard, ginger, and vinegar; a stew of carp" (14c.), which is of unknown origin. Perhaps from Old French galer "to make merry, live well" (see gallant) + Old North French mafrer "to eat much," from Middle Dutch maffelen [Klein]. Weekley sees in the second element the proper name Maufré. Hence, figuratively, "any inconsistent or absurd medley."
gallinaceous (adj.) Look up gallinaceous at
"of or resembling domestic fowl," 1783, from Latin gallinaceus "of hens, of fowls, pertaining to poultry," from gallina "hen," a fem. formation from gallus "cock," probably from PIE root *gal- (2) "to call, shout" (see call (v.)) as "the calling bird." But it also has an ancient association with Gaul (see Gallic), and some speculate that this is the source of the word, "on the assumption that the Romans became acquainted with the cock from Gaul, where it was brought by the Phoenicians" [Buck].
galling (adj.) Look up galling at
"irritating, offensive, extremely annoying," 1580s, figurative use of present participle of gall (v.).
gallinicide (n.) Look up gallinicide at
"the killing of chickens," 1883, from Latin gallina "hen" (see gallinaceous) + -cide.
gallinivorous (adj.) Look up gallinivorous at
"chicken-eating," 1862, from Latin gallina "hen" (see gallinaceous) + -vorous.
galliot (n.) Look up galliot at
"small galley," mid-14c., from Old French galiote, galiot "small ship," diminutive of galie (see galley).
gallipot (n.) Look up gallipot at
"small glazed pot," mid-15c., of uncertain origin; perhaps from French, perhaps literally "galley pot," meaning one imported from the Mediterranean on galleys.
gallium (n.) Look up gallium at
metalic element that melts in the hand, discovered by spectral lines in 1875 by French chemist Lecoq de Boisbaudran (1838-1912), who named it apparently in honor of his homeland (see Gallic), but it has been suggested that he also punned on his own name (compare Latin gallus "cock," for which see gallinaceous). With metallic element ending -ium.
gallivant (v.) Look up gallivant at
"gad about, spend time in frivolous pleasure-seeking, especially with the opposite sex," 1809, of uncertain origin, perhaps a playful elaboration of gallant in an obsolete verbal sense of "play the gallant, flirt, gad about." Related: Gallivanted; gallivanting.
Young Lobski said to his ugly wife,
"I'm off till to-morrow to fish, my life;"
Says Mrs. Lobski, "I'm sure you a'nt",
But you brute you are going to gallivant."

What Mrs. Lobski said was right,
Gay Mr. Lobski was out all night.
He ne'er went to fish, 'tis known very well
But where he went I shall not tell.

["Songs from the Exile," in "Literary Panorama," London, 1809]
Gallo-Roman (adj.) Look up Gallo-Roman at
"belonging to Gaul when it was part of the Roman Empire," from comb. form of Gaul + Roman. In reference to a language, and as a noun, the language spoken in France from the end of the fifth century C.E. to the middle of the ninth, a form of Vulgar Latin with local modifications and additions from Gaulish that then, in the region around Paris, developed into what linguists call Old French.
Gallomania (n.) Look up Gallomania at
1797, from comb. form of Gaul + -mania. Jefferson used adjective Gallomane (1787).
gallon (n.) Look up gallon at
English measure of capacity (containing four quarts), usually for liquids, late 13c., from Old North French galon, corresponding to Old French jalon, name of a liquid measure roughly equivalent to a modern gallon," which is related to (perhaps augmentative of) jale "bowl," from Medieval Latin or Vulgar Latin diminutive form galleta "bucket, pail," also "a measure of wine," a word of unknown origin, perhaps from Gaulish galla "vessel."
gallop (v.) Look up gallop at
"move or run by leaps," early 15c., from Old French galoper "to gallop" (12c.), central Old French form of Old North French waloper, probably from Frankish *wala hlaupan "to run well" (see wallop). Related: Galloped; galloping. Though the French word is Germanic, Dutch galopperen, German galoppiren, Swedish galoppera are from French.
gallop (n.) Look up gallop at
"a leaping gait," the most rapid movement of a horse, 1520s, from gallop (v.).
gallow Look up gallow at
singular of gallows.
Galloway Look up Galloway at
district in southwestern Scotland (Medieval Latin Gallovidia), equivalent to Welsh Gallwyddel, Irish Gallgaidhil, literally "foreign Gaels," containing the Gal- element also common in Irish place-names (Irish Gaelic gall) and meaning there "a stranger, a foreigner," especially an Englishman. Related: Gallovidian, which is from the Latin form of the name. The adjective Galwegian is on analogy of Norwegian.
gallows (n.) Look up gallows at
c. 1300, plural of Middle English galwe "gallows" (mid-13c.), from Old Norse galgi "gallows," or from Old English galga (Mercian), gealga (West Saxon) "gallows;" all from Proto-Germanic *galgon "pole" (cognates: Old Frisian galga, Old Saxon galgo, Middle High German galge "gallows, cross," German Galgen "gallows," Gothic galga "cross"), from PIE *ghalgh- "branch, rod" (cognates: Lithuanian zalga "pole, perch," Armenian dzalk "pole"). In Old English, also used of the cross of the crucifixion. Plural because made of two poles. Gallows-tree is Old English galg-treow. Gallows humor (1881) translates German Galgenhumor.
gallstone (n.) Look up gallstone at
1758, from gall (n.1) + stone (n.).
Gallup poll Look up Gallup poll at
1940, from George H. Gallup (1901-1984), U.S. journalist and statistician, who in 1935 set up the American Institute of Public Opinion.
galoot (n.) Look up galoot at
1812, nautical, "raw recruit, green hand," apparently originally a sailor's contemptuous word for soldiers or marines, of unknown origin. "Dictionary of American Slang" proposes galut, Sierra Leone creole form of Spanish galeoto "galley slave." In general (non-nautical) use by 1866, "awkward or boorish man," but often a term of humorous contempt.
galore (adv.) Look up galore at
1670s, from Irish go leór, and equivalent Scottish Gaelic gu leóir "sufficiently, enough," from Old Irish roar "enough," from Proto-Celtic *ro-wero- "sufficiency." The particle go/gu usually means "to," but it also is affixed to adjectives to form adverbs, as here. Often used in English with the force of a predicate adjective.
galosh (n.) Look up galosh at
see galoshes.
galoshes (n.) Look up galoshes at
mid-14c. (surname Galocher is attested from c. 1300), "kind of footwear consisting of a wooden sole fastened onto the foot with leather thongs," perhaps from Old French galoche "overshoe, galosh" (singular), 13c., from Late Latin gallicula, diminutive of gallica (solea) "a Gallic (sandal)" [Klein]. Alternative etymology [Barnhart, Hatz.-Darm.] is from Vulgar Latin *galopia, from Greek kalopodion, diminutive of kalopous "shoemaker's last," from kalon "wood" (properly "firewood") + pous "foot" (see foot (n.)). "The name seems to have been variously applied" [OED]. Modern meaning "rubber covering of a boot or shoe" is from 1853.
galumph (v.) Look up galumph at
1872, "to prance about in a self-satisfied manner," coined by Lewis Carroll in "Jabberwocky," apparently by blending gallop and triumph. "The sense in current use may vary according to different notions of what the sound expresses" [OED]. Related: Galumphing.
galvanic (adj.) Look up galvanic at
1797; see galvanism + -ic. Perhaps from or based on French galvanique. Related: Galvanical.
galvanise (v.) Look up galvanise at
chiefly British English spelling of galvanize; for suffix, see -ize. Related: Galvanised; galvanising.
galvanism (n.) Look up galvanism at
"electricity produced by chemical action," 1797, from French galvanisme or Italian galvanismo, from Luigi Galvani (1737-1798), professor of anatomy at Bologna, who discovered it c. 1792 while running currents through the legs of dead frogs.
galvanization (n.) Look up galvanization at
1798, formed as a noun of state to go with the vocabulary of galvanism; perhaps immediately from French galvanisation (1797 in the "Annales de chimie et de physique").
galvanize (v.) Look up galvanize at
1801, "stimulate by galvanic electricity," from French galvaniser, from galvanisme (see galvanism). Figurative sense of "excite, stimulate (as if by electricity)" first recorded 1853 (galvanic was in figurative use in 1807). Meaning "to coat with metal by means of galvanic electricity" (especially to plate iron with tin, but now typically to plate it with zinc) is from 1839.
He'll swear that in her dancing she cuts all others out,
Though like a Gal that's galvanized, she throws her legs about.
[Thomas Hood, "Love has not Eyes," 1845]
Related: Galvanized; galvanizing.
galvanized (adj.) Look up galvanized at
1820, "subject to galvanism," past participle adjective from galvanize. As "coated with a metal by galvanism" from 1839, originally in galvanized iron.
Iron covered with zinc has been called galvanised iron, from the fact that we have two metals in different electrical conditions; the zinc, suffering chemical change, oxidising, and acting as a protecting agent to the iron. ["Hunt's Hand-Book to the Official Catalogues," 1851]
galvanometer (n.) Look up galvanometer at
instrument for detecting and measuring electric current, 1801, from galvano-, used as a comb. form of galvanism + -meter. Related: Galvanometric. Galvanoscope "instrument for detecting and determining the direction of electric current" is from 1832.
gam (n.) Look up gam at
"a leg," 1781, see gams. Called "cant" in the oldest citation.
Gamaliel Look up Gamaliel at
masc. proper name, from Greek Gamaliel, from Hebrew Gamli'el, literally "reward of God."
Gambia Look up Gambia at
West African nation, named for the river through it, which was so called by 14c. Portuguese explorers, said to be a corruption of a native name, Ba-Dimma, meaning "the river." Related: Gambian.
gambit (n.) Look up gambit at
"chess opening in which a pawn or piece is risked for advantage later," 1650s, gambett, from Italian gambetto, literally "a tripping up" (as a trick in wrestling), from gamba "leg," from Late Latin gamba (see gambol (n.)). Applied to chess openings in Spanish in 1561 by Ruy Lopez, who traced it to the Italian word, but the form in Spanish generally was gambito, which led to French gambit, which has influenced the English spelling of the word. Broader sense of "opening move meant to gain advantage" in English is recorded from 1855.
gamble (v.) Look up gamble at
"risk something of value on a game of chance," 1726 (implied in gambling), from a dialectal survival of Middle English gammlen, variant of gamenen "to play, jest, be merry," from Old English gamenian "to play, joke, pun," from gamen (see game (n.)), with form as in fumble, etc. Or possibly gamble is from a derivative of gamel "to play games" (1590s), itself likely a frequentative from game. Originally regarded as a slang word. The intrusive -b- may be from confusion with unrelated gambol (v.). Transitive meaning "to squander in gambling" is from 1808. Related: Gambled; gambling.
gamble (n.) Look up gamble at
"risky venture," 1823, from gamble (v.). As "an act of gambling" by 1879.
gambler (n.) Look up gambler at
1738, agent noun from gamble (v.).
gambling (n.) Look up gambling at
1784, "habitual indulgence in gambling," verbal noun from gamble (v.). Gambling-house attested by 1794.
gamboge (n.) Look up gamboge at
type of gum-resin from Southeast Asia, used in Europe as a yellow dye and as a purgative in medicine, 1630, in widely varying spellings, from Modern Latin cambogium, ultimately from the source of the place name Cambodia.
gambol (n.) Look up gambol at
"frolic, merrymaking," 1590s, earlier gambolde "a skipping, a leap or spring" (1510s), from Middle French gambade (15c.), from Late Latin gamba "horse's hock or leg," from Greek kampe "a bending" (on notion of "a joint"), from PIE *kamp- "to bend" (see campus). Ending altered perhaps by confusion with formerly common ending -aud, -ald (as in ribald).
gambol (v.) Look up gambol at
"skip about in sport," 1580s; earlier gambade (c. 1500), from Middle French gambader, from gambade (see gambol (n.)). Compare Middle English gambon "a ham" (see gammon); English dialectal gammerel "small of the leg;" gamble "a leg." Related: Gamboled; gamboling; gambolling.
gambrel (n.) Look up gambrel at
"hipped roof," 1851, short for gambrel roof (1763), so called for its shape, from gambrel "horse's hind leg" (c. 1600), earlier "wooden bar to hang carcasses" (1540s), perhaps from Old North French gamberel, from gambe "leg," from Late Latin gamba (see gambol).
game (adj.2) Look up game at
"ready for action, unafraid, and up to the task;" probably literally "spirited as a game-cock," 1725, from game-cock "bird bred for fighting" (1670s), from game (n.) in the "sport, amusement" sense. Middle English adjectives gamesome, gamelich meant "joyful, playful, sportive."
game (n.) Look up game at
c. 1200, from Old English gamen "joy, fun; game, amusement," common Germanic (cognates: Old Frisian game "joy, glee," Old Norse gaman "game, sport; pleasure, amusement," Old Saxon gaman, Old High German gaman "sport, merriment," Danish gamen, Swedish gamman "merriment"), said to be identical with Gothic gaman "participation, communion," from Proto-Germanic *ga- collective prefix + *mann "person," giving a sense of "people together."

The -en was lost perhaps through being mistaken for a suffix. Meaning "contest for success or superiority played according to rules" is first attested c. 1200 (of athletic contests, chess, backgammon). Especially "the sport of hunting, fishing, hawking, or fowling" (c. 1300), thus "wild animals caught for sport" (c. 1300), which is the game in fair game (see under fair (adj.)), also gamey. Meaning "number of points required to win a game" is from 1830. Game plan is 1941, from U.S. football; game show first attested 1961.
game (adj.1) Look up game at
"lame," 1787, from north Midlands dialect, of unknown origin, perhaps a variant of gammy (tramps' slang) "bad," or from Old North French gambe "leg" (see gambol (n.)).
game (v.) Look up game at
Middle English gamen "to sport, joke, jest," from Old English gamenian "to play, jest, joke;" see game (n.). The Middle English word is little recorded from c. 1400 and modern use for "to play at games" (1520s) probably is a new formation from the noun; and it might have been re-re-coined late 20c. in reference to computer games. Related: Gamed; gaming.
game-cock Look up game-cock at
cock bred for fighting or from fighting stock, 1670s, from game (n.) in the sporting and amusement sense + cock (n.1). Figurative use by 1727.
gamekeeper (n.) Look up gamekeeper at
one who has responsibility for animals kept for sport, 1660s, from game (n.) in the "wild animal caught for sport" sense + keeper.
gamelan (n.) Look up gamelan at
"East Indian orchestra," 1817, from Javanese gamel "to handle."