healthily (adv.) Look up healthily at
1630s, from healthy + -ly (2).
healthy (adj.) Look up healthy at
1550s, from health + -y (2). Slightly earlier in the same sense was healthsome (1530s). Related: Healthiness.
It is wrong to say that certain articles of food are healthy or unhealthy. Wholesome and unwholesome are the right words. A pig may be healthy or unhealthy while alive; but after he is killed and becomes pork, he can enjoy no health, and suffer no sickness. [Eliza Leslie, "Miss Leslie's Behaviour Book," Philadelphia, 1839]
heap (n.) Look up heap at
Old English heap "pile, great number, multitude" (of things or persons), from West Germanic *haupaz (cognates: Old Saxon hop, Old Frisian hap, Middle Low German hupe, Dutch hoop, German Haufe "heap"), perhaps related to Old English heah "high." Slang meaning "old car" is attested from 1924. As a characteristic word in American Indian English speech, "a lot, a great deal," by 1832.
heap (v.) Look up heap at
Old English heapian "collect, heap up, bring together;" from heap (n.). Related: Heaped; heaping. Compare Old High German houfon "to heap."
hear (v.) Look up hear at
Old English heran (Anglian), (ge)hieran, hyran (West Saxon) "to hear, listen (to), obey, follow; accede to, grant; judge," from Proto-Germanic *hauzjan (cognates: Old Norse heyra, Old Frisian hora, Dutch horen, German hören, Gothic hausjan), perhaps from PIE *kous- "to hear" (see acoustic). The shift from *-z- to -r- is a regular feature in some Germanic languages.

For spelling, see head (n.); spelling distinction between hear and here developed 1200-1550. Old English also had the excellent adjective hiersum "ready to hear, obedient," literally "hear-some" with suffix from handsome, etc. Hear, hear! (1680s) was originally imperative, used as an exclamation to call attention to a speaker's words; now a general cheer of approval. Originally it was hear him!
heard Look up heard at
past tense and past participle of hear, Old English herde.
hearer (n.) Look up hearer at
mid-14c., agent noun from hear.
hearing (n.) Look up hearing at
"perception by ear," early 13c., from present participle of hear. Meaning "a listening to evidence in a court of law" is from 1570s.
hearken (v.) Look up hearken at
Old English heorcnian, a suffixed form of *heorcian, root of hark; from Proto-Germanic *hausjan (see hear). Harken is the usual spelling in U.S. and probably is better justified by etymology; hearken likely is from influence of hear.
hearkening (n.) Look up hearkening at
Old English heorcnunge "harkening, listening, power of hearing" (see hearken).
hearsay (n.) Look up hearsay at
1530s, perhaps mid-15c., from phrase to hear say.
hearse (n.) Look up hearse at
c. 1300 (late 13c. in Anglo-Latin), "flat framework for candles, hung over a coffin," from Old French herse, formerly herce "large rake for breaking up soil, harrow; portcullis," also "large chandelier in a church," from Medieval Latin hercia, from Latin hirpicem (nominative hirpex) "harrow," from Oscan hirpus "wolf," supposedly in allusion to its teeth. Or the Oscan word may be related to Latin hirsutus "shaggy, bristly." The funeral display so called because it resembled a harrow; hearse in its sense of "portcullis" is not attested in English before 15c. For spelling, see head. Sense extended to other temporary frameworks built over dead people, then to "vehicle for carrying a body," a sense first recorded 1640s.
heart (n.) Look up heart at
Old English heorte "heart; breast, soul, spirit, will, desire; courage; mind, intellect," from Proto-Germanic *herton- (cognates: Old Saxon herta, Old Frisian herte, Old Norse hjarta, Dutch hart, Old High German herza, German Herz, Gothic hairto), from PIE *kerd- (1) "heart" (cognates: Greek kardia, Latin cor, Old Irish cride, Welsh craidd, Hittite kir, Lithuanian širdis, Russian serdce "heart," Breton kreiz "middle," Old Church Slavonic sreda "middle").

Spelling with -ea- is c. 1500, reflecting what then was a long vowel, and remained when pronunciation shifted. Most of the figurative senses were present in Old English, including "intellect, memory," now only in by heart. Heart attack attested from 1875; heart disease is from 1864. The card game hearts is so called from 1886.
heart-rending (adj.) Look up heart-rending at
also heartrending, heart rending, 1680s, from heart (n.) + present participle of rend (v.). Related: Heart-rendingly.
heart-throb (n.) Look up heart-throb at
also heartthrob, 1839, from heart (n.) + throb (n.). Of persons who inspire romantic feelings, from 1928.
heartache (n.) Look up heartache at
Old English heortece, in the sense of a physical pain; c. 1600 in sense of "anguish of mind;" from heart (n.) + ache (n.). Old English did, however, have heartsarnes "grief," literally "heart-soreness."
heartbeat (n.) Look up heartbeat at
1850, from heart (n.) + beat (n.). From the beginning used as a figure for "a very brief time."
heartbreak (n.) Look up heartbreak at
1570s, from heart (n.) + break (n.). Related: Heartbreaking.
heartbreaker (n.) Look up heartbreaker at
1660s, originally "a fetching lock of hair;" of persons, from 1863; agent noun from heartbreak.
heartbroken (adj.) Look up heartbroken at
1580s, present participle of heartbreak.
heartburn (n.) Look up heartburn at
mid-13c., herte-brine "lust," later "heartburn, indigestion" (mid-15c.); also herte-brenning "anger, bitterness" (c. 1400), also "heartburn" (mid-15c.). See heart (n.) + burn (n.). Also see cardiac for confusion of "heart" and "stomach."
hearted (adj.) Look up hearted at
now used only in combinations, meaning "at heart," since c. 1200, first attested in hard-hearted; see heart. Related: heartedly.
hearten (v.) Look up hearten at
c. 1200, "to encourage," from heart + -en (1). A verb formed from figurative sense of heart. Related: Heartened; heartening.
heartfelt (adj.) Look up heartfelt at
also heart-felt, 1734, from heart (n.) + past tense of feel (v.).
heartful (adj.) Look up heartful at
"devout, earnest," mid-14c., from heart (n.) + -ful. Related: Heartfully.
hearth (n.) Look up hearth at
Old English heorð "hearth, fire," in transferred use "house, home," from West Germanic *hertho "burning place" (cognates: Old Saxon and Old Frisian herth, Middle Dutch hert, Dutch haard, German Herd "floor, ground, fireplace"), from PIE *kerta-, from root *ker- "heat, fire" (see carbon).
heartily (adv.) Look up heartily at
c. 1300, from hearty + -ly (2).
heartland (n.) Look up heartland at
1904, first recorded in geo-political writings of English geographer H.J. MacKinder (1861-1947), from heart (n.) in figurative sense "center, core" + land (n.).
heartless (adj.) Look up heartless at
Old English heortleas "dispirited, dejected;" see heart (n.) + -less. In Middle English with expanded senses "lacking in courage; foolish; listless; half-hearted; sluggish." Sense of "callous, cruel" is not certainly attested before Shelley used it in 1816. Literal meaning "lacking a heart, lifeless" (mid-15c.) is rare. Related: Heartlessly; heartlessness.
heartsick (adj.) Look up heartsick at
"despondent," late 14c., from heart (n.) + sick (adj.). Old English heortseoc meant "ill from heart disease."
heartstrings (n.) Look up heartstrings at
late 15c., originally literal, in old anatomy theory "the tendons and nerves that brace the heart;" from heart (n.) + string (n.). Transferred and figurative sense from 1590s.
heartwarming (adj.) Look up heartwarming at
1899, from heart (n.) + present participle of warm (v.).
hearty (adj.) Look up hearty at
late 14c., "courageous; spirited, zealous;" also "loyal, faithful; sagacious, wise," from heart (n.) + -y (2). Related: Heartiness.
heat (n.) Look up heat at
Old English hætu, hæto "heat, warmth; fervor ardor," from Proto-Germanic *haita- "heat" (cognates: Old Saxon hittia, Old Norse hiti, Old Frisian hete, German hitze "heat," Gothic heito "fever"), from PIE *kaid-, from root *kai- "heat." The same root is the source of Old English hat "hot" and hæða "hot weather" (see hot).

Meaning "a single course in a race," especially a horse race, is from 1660s, perhaps from earlier figurative sense of "violent action; a single intense effort" (late 14c.), or meaning "run given to a horse to prepare for a race" (1570s). This later expanded to "division of a race or contest when there are too many contestants to run at once," the winners of each heat then competing in a final race. Meaning "sexual excitement in animals" is from 1768. Meaning "trouble with the police" attested by 1920. Heat wave "period of excessive hot weather" first attested 1890; earlier in reference to solar cycles.
heat (v.) Look up heat at
Old English hætan "to heat; to become hot," from Proto-Germanic *haita- (see heat (n.)). Related: Heated (with many variants in Middle English); heating. Compare Middle Dutch heeten, Dutch heten, German heizen "to heat."
heated (adj.) Look up heated at
in figurative sense "agitated, inflamed," 1590s, past participle adjective from heat (v.). Related: Heatedly.
heater (n.) Look up heater at
c. 1500, of persons, agent noun from heat. Of devices, from 1660s. Baseball slang meaning "fastball" is attested by 1985.
heath (n.) Look up heath at
Old English hæð "untilled land, tract of wasteland," earlier "heather," influenced by Old Norse heiðr "field," from Proto-Germanic *haithiz (cognates: Old Saxon hetha, Old High German heida "heather," Dutch heide "heath," Gothic haiþi "field"), from PIE *kaito "forest, uncultivated land" (cognates: Old Irish ciad, Welsh coed, Breton coet "wood, forest").
heathen (n.) Look up heathen at
Old English hæðen "not Christian or Jewish," also as a noun, "heathen man" (especially of the Danes), merged with Old Norse heiðinn (adj.) "heathen, pagan;" perhaps literally "pertaining to one inhabiting uncultivated land;" see heath + -en (2).

But historically assumed to be from Gothic haiþno "gentile, heathen woman," used by Ulfilas in the first translation of the Bible into a Germanic language (as in in Mark vii:26, for "Greek"); if so it could be a derivative of Gothic haiþi "dwelling on the heath," but this sense is not recorded. It may have been chosen on model of Latin paganus, with its root sense of "rural" (see pagan), or for resemblance to Greek ethne (see gentile), or it may be a literal borrowing of that Greek word, perhaps via Armenian hethanos [Sophus Bugge]. Like other basic words for exclusively Christian ideas (such as church) it likely would have come first into Gothic and then spread to other Germanic languages.
heathenish (adj.) Look up heathenish at
Old English hæðenisc; see heathen + -ish.
heathenism (n.) Look up heathenism at
c. 1600, from heathen + -ism. An Old English word for it was hæðennes, and a later one was heathenry (1560s).
heather (n.) Look up heather at
early 14c., hathir, from Old English *hæddre, Scottish or northern England dialect name for Calluna vulgaris, probably altered by heath, but real connection to that word is unlikely [Liberman, OED]. Perhaps originally Celtic. As a fem. proper name little used in U.S. before 1935, but a top-15 name for girls born there 1971-1989.
heave (v.) Look up heave at
Old English hebban "to lift, raise; lift up, exalt" (class VI strong verb; past tense hof, past participle hafen), from Proto-Germanic *hafjan (cognates: Old Norse hefja, Dutch heffen, German heben, Gothic hafjan "to lift, raise"), from PIE *kap-yo-, from root *kap- "to grasp" (see capable).

Related to Old English habban "to hold, possess." Intransitive use by c. 1200. Meaning "to throw" is from 1590s. Sense of "retch, make an effort to vomit" is first attested c. 1600. Related: Heaved; heaving. Nautical heave-ho was a chant in lifting (c. 1300, hevelow).
heave (n.) Look up heave at
1570s, from heave (v.).
heaven (n.) Look up heaven at
Old English heofon "home of God," earlier "sky, firmament," probably from Proto-Germanic *hibin-, dissimilated from *himin- (cognates Low German heben, Old Norse himinn, Gothic himins, Old Frisian himul, Dutch hemel, German Himmel "heaven, sky"), perhaps from a PIE root *kem- "to cover" (also proposed as the source of chemise). [Watkins derives it elaborately from PIE *ak- "sharp" via *akman- "stone, sharp stone," then "stony vault of heaven"].

Plural use in sense of "sky" is probably from Ptolemaic theory of space composed of many spheres, but it also formerly was used in the same sense as the singular in Biblical language, as a translation of Hebrew plural shamayim. Heaven-sent (adj.) attested from 1640s.
heavenly (adj.) Look up heavenly at
Old English heofonlic "celestial; chaste;" see heaven + -ly (1). Meaning "beautiful, divinely lovely" is late 14c., often (though not originally) with reference to the celestial "music of the spheres;" weakened sense of "excellent, enjoyable" is first recorded 1874. The heavenly bodies (stars, planets, etc.) attested from late 14c. Related: Heavenliness.
heavens (n.) Look up heavens at
"realm of the heavenly bodies," 1670s, from heaven.
heavily (adv.) Look up heavily at
Old English hefiglice "violently, intensely; sorrowfully; sluggishly," from hefig (see heavy) + -ly (2).
heaviness (n.) Look up heaviness at
Old English hefigness "heaviness, weight; burden, affliction; dullness, torpor;" see heavy + -ness.
heavy (adj.) Look up heavy at
Old English hefig "heavy, having much weight; important, grave; oppressive; slow, dull," from Proto-Germanic *hafiga "containing something; having weight" (cognates: Old Saxon, Old High German hebig, Old Norse hofugr, Middle Dutch hevich, Dutch hevig), from PIE *kap- "to grasp" (see capable). Jazz slang sense of "profound, serious" is from 1937 but would have been comprehensible to an Anglo-Saxon. Heavy industry recorded from 1932. Heavy metal attested by 1839 in chemistry; in nautical jargon from at least 1744 in sense "large-caliber guns on a ship."
While we undervalue the nicely-balanced weight of broadsides which have lately been brought forward with all the grave precision of Cocker, we are well aware of the decided advantages of heavy metal. ["United Services Journal," London, 1830]
As a type of rock music, from 1972.