hole (v.) Look up hole at Dictionary.com
"to make a hole," Old English holian "to hollow out, scoop out" (see hole (n.)). Related: Holed; holing.
holey (adj.) Look up holey at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from hole + -y (2). The -e- retained so the eye may distinguish it from holy.
holiday (n.) Look up holiday at Dictionary.com
1500s, earlier haliday (c. 1200), from Old English haligdæg "holy day; Sabbath," from halig "holy" (see holy) + dæg "day" (see day); in 14c. meaning both "religious festival" and "day of recreation," but pronunciation and sense diverged 16c. As a verb meaning "to pass the holidays" by 1869. Happy holidays is from mid-19c., in British English, with reference to summer vacation from school. As a Christmastime greeting, by 1937, American English, in Camel cigarette ads.
holier-than-thou Look up holier-than-thou at Dictionary.com
as an adjectival phrase in reference to supercilious sanctimony attested by 1888, American English. The text is in Isaiah lxv:5.
holiness (n.) Look up holiness at Dictionary.com
Old English halignis "holiness, sanctity, religion; holy thing;" see holy + -ness. Compare Old High German heilagnissa. As title of the Pope, it translates Latin sanctitas (until c. 600 also applied to bishops).
holism (n.) Look up holism at Dictionary.com
1926, apparently by South African Gen. J.C. Smuts (1870-1950) in his book "Holism and Evolution" which treats of evolution as a process of unification of separate parts; from Greek holos "whole" (see safe (adj.)) + -ism.
This character of "wholeness" meets us everywhere and points to something fundamental in the universe. Holism (from [holos] = whole) is the term here coined for this fundamental factor operative towards the creation of wholes in the universe. [Smuts, "Holism and Evolution," p.86]
holistic (adj.) Look up holistic at Dictionary.com
1939, from holism + -istic. Holistic medicine is first attested 1960. Related: Holistically.
holla Look up holla at Dictionary.com
as a command to "stop, cease," 1520s, from French holà (15c.). As a command to get attention, from 1580s. As an urban slang form of holler (v.) and meaning "greet, shout out to," it was in use by 2003.
Holland Look up Holland at Dictionary.com
"the Netherlands," early 14c., from Dutch Holland, probably Old Dutch holt lant "wood land," describing the district around Dordrecht, the nucleus of Holland. Technically, just one province of the Netherlands, but in English use extended to the whole nation.
hollandaise Look up hollandaise at Dictionary.com
1841, from French sauce hollandaise "Dutch sauce," from fem. of hollandais "Dutch," from Hollande "Holland."
Hollander Look up Hollander at Dictionary.com
"native or inhabitant of Holland," mid-15c., from Holland + -er (1).
holler (v.) Look up holler at Dictionary.com
1690s, American English, variant of hollo (1540s) "to shout," especially "to call to the hounds in hunting," related to hello. Compare colloquial yeller for yellow, etc. As a style of singing (originally Southern U.S.), first recorded 1936. Related: Hollered; hollering. As a noun, from 1896, earlier hollar (1825).
hollow (adj.) Look up hollow at Dictionary.com
c. 1200, from Old English holh (n.) "hollow place, hole," from Proto-Germanic *hul-, from PIE *kel- (2) "to cover, conceal" (see cell). The figurative sense of "insincere" is attested from 1520s. Related: Hollowly; hollowness. To carry it hollow "take it completely" is first recorded 1660s, of unknown origin or connection.
hollow (v.) Look up hollow at Dictionary.com
late 14c., holowen, from hollow (adj.). Related: Hollowed; hollowing.
hollow (n.) Look up hollow at Dictionary.com
"lowland, valley, basin," 1550s, probably a modern formation from hollow (adj.). Old English had holh (n.) "cave, den; internal cavity."
holly (n.) Look up holly at Dictionary.com
mid-15c., earlier holin (mid-12c.), shortening of Old English holegn "holly," from Proto-Germanic *hulin- (cognates: Old Saxon, Old High German hulis, Old Norse hulfr, Middle Dutch huls, Dutch, German hulst "holly"), cognate with Middle Irish cuilenn, Welsh celyn, Gaelic cuilionn "holly," probably all from PIE root *kel- (5) "to prick" (cognates: Old Church Slavonic kolja "to prick," Russian kolos "ear of corn"), in reference to its leaves. French houx "holly" is from Frankish *huls or some other Germanic source.
hollyhock (n.) Look up hollyhock at Dictionary.com
mid-13c., holihoc, from holi "holy" (see holy) + hokke "mallow," from Old English hocc, of unknown origin. Another early name for the plant was caulis Sancti Cuthberti "St. Cuthbert's cole."
Hollywood Look up Hollywood at Dictionary.com
region near Los Angeles, named for the ranch that once stood there, which was named by Deida Wilcox, wife of Horace H. Wilcox, Kansas City real estate man, when they moved there in 1886. They began selling off building lots in 1891 and the village was incorporated in 1903. Once a quiet farming community, by 1910 barns were being converted into movie studios. The name was used generically for "American movies" from 1926, three years after the giant sign was set up, originally Hollywoodland, another real estate developer's promotion.
holm (n.) Look up holm at Dictionary.com
late Old English, from Old Norse holmr "small island, especially in a bay or river," also "meadow by a shore," or cognate Old Danish hulm "low lying land," from Proto-Germanic *hul-maz, from PIE root *kel- (4) "to rise, be elevated, be prominent; hill" (see hill). Obsolete, but preserved in place names. Cognate Old English holm (only attested in poetic language) meant "sea, ocean, wave."
holmium (n.) Look up holmium at Dictionary.com
rare earth element, named by French chemist Lecoq de Boisbaudran (1838-1912) in 1886, from holmia "holmium oxide," a Modern Latin word coined by the earth's discoverer, Swedish chemist Per Teodor Cleve (1840-1905), in 1879 from Holmia, Latin name of Stockholm.
holo- Look up holo- at Dictionary.com
before vowels, hol-, word-forming element meaning "whole, entire, complete," from Greek holo-, comb. form of holos "whole, entire, complete," also "safe and sound," from PIE *sol-wo-, from root *sol- (see safe (adj.)).
holocaust (n.) Look up holocaust at Dictionary.com
mid-13c., "sacrifice by fire, burnt offering," from Greek holokauston "a thing wholly burnt," neuter of holokaustos "burned whole," from holos "whole" (see holo-) + kaustos, verbal adjective of kaiein "to burn." Originally a Bible word for "burnt offerings," given wider sense of "massacre, destruction of a large number of persons" from 1833. The Holocaust "Nazi genocide of European Jews in World War II," first recorded 1957, earlier known in Hebrew as Shoah "catastrophe." The word itself was used in English in reference to Hitler's Jewish policies from 1942, but not as a proper name for them.
Auschwitz makes all too clear the principle that the human psyche can create meaning out of anything. [Robert Jay Lifton, "The Nazi Doctors"]
Holocene (adj.) Look up Holocene at Dictionary.com
in reference to the epoch that began 10,000 years ago and continues today, 1897, from French holocène (1867), from Greek holo-, comb. form of holos "whole" (see safe (adj.)) + -cene.
hologram (n.) Look up hologram at Dictionary.com
1949, coined by Hungarian-born British scientist Dennis Gabor (Gábor Dénes), 1971 Nobel prize winner in physics for his work in holography; from Greek holos "whole" (in sense of three-dimensional; see safe (adj.)) + -gram.
holograph (n.) Look up holograph at Dictionary.com
"document written entirely by the person from whom it proceeds," 1620s, from Late Latin holographus, from Greek holographos "written entirely by the same hand," literally "written in full," from holos "whole" (see safe (adj.)) + graphos "written," from graphein "to write" (see -graphy). Modern use, with reference to holograms, is a 1960s back-formation from holography.
holographic (adj.) Look up holographic at Dictionary.com
early 18c., of writing, from holograph + -ic; physics sense is from 1964 (see holography).
holography (n.) Look up holography at Dictionary.com
early 19c., of writing, from holograph + -y (4); physics sense, "process of using holograms," is from 1964, coined by discoverer, Hungarian-born physicist Gábor Dénes (1900-1979), from hologram on analogy of telegraphy/telegram.
holomorphic (adj.) Look up holomorphic at Dictionary.com
1880, from holo- + morphic (see metamorphosis).
holophrastic (adj.) Look up holophrastic at Dictionary.com
1837, from holo- + Greek phrastikos, from phrazein "to indicate, tell, express" (see phrase (n.)).
Holstein Look up Holstein at Dictionary.com
breed of cattle, 1865; so called because originally raised in nearby Friesland. The place name is literally "woodland settlers," from the roots of German Holz "wood" (see holt) and siedeln "to settle," altered by influence of Stein "stone." Since 15c. it has been united with the Duchy of Schleswig.
holster (n.) Look up holster at Dictionary.com
"leather case for a pistol," 1660s, probably from Old English heolster, earlier helustr "concealment, hiding place," from Proto-Germanic *hulfti- (cognates: Old High German hulft "cover, case, sheath," Old Norse hulstr "case, sheath," Middle Dutch holster, German Halfter "holster"), from PIE *kel- (2) "to cover, to hide" (see cell). Intermediate forms are wanting, and the modern word could as well be from the Norse or Dutch cognates.
holster (v.) Look up holster at Dictionary.com
by 1902, from holster (n.). Related: Holstered; holstering.
holt (n.) Look up holt at Dictionary.com
Old English holt "woods," common in place names, from Proto-Germanic *hultam- (cognates: Old Frisian, Old Norse, Middle Dutch holt, Dutch hout, German Holz "wood"), from PIE *kldo- (cognates: Old Church Slavonic klada "beam, timber," Greek klados "twig," Old Irish caill "wood"), from root *kel- (1) "to strike, cut."
holy (adj.) Look up holy at Dictionary.com
Old English halig "holy, consecrated, sacred, godly," from Proto-Germanic *hailaga- (cognates: Old Norse heilagr, Old Frisian helich "holy," Old Saxon helag, Middle Dutch helich, Old High German heilag, German heilig, Gothic hailags "holy"). Adopted at conversion for Latin sanctus.

Primary (pre-Christian) meaning is not possible to determine, but probably it was "that must be preserved whole or intact, that cannot be transgressed or violated," and connected with Old English hal (see health) and Old High German heil "health, happiness, good luck" (source of the German salutation Heil). Holy water was in Old English. Holy has been used as an intensifying word from 1837; used in expletives since 1880s (such as holy smoke, 1883, holy mackerel, 1876, holy cow, 1914, holy moly etc.), most of them euphemisms for holy Christ or holy Moses.
Holy Land Look up Holy Land at Dictionary.com
"western Palestine, Judaea," late 13c., translating Medieval Latin terra sancta (11c.).
holystone (n.) Look up holystone at Dictionary.com
soft sandstone used to scrub decks of sailing ships, 1777, despite the spelling, so called perhaps because it is full of holes. As a verb, by 1828.
homage (n.) Look up homage at Dictionary.com
late 13c., from Old French homage (12c., Modern French hommage) "allegiance or respect for one's feudal lord," from homme "man," from Latin homo (genitive hominis) "man" (see homunculus). Figurative sense of "reverence, honor shown" is from late 14c. As a verb, from 1590s (agent noun homager is from c. 1400).
hombre (n.) Look up hombre at Dictionary.com
"a man" (especially one of Spanish descent), 1846, from Spanish, from Latin hominem, accusative of homo "man" (see homunculus).
homburg (n.) Look up homburg at Dictionary.com
type of soft felt had with a curled brim and a dented crown, 1894, from Homburg, resort town in Prussia, where it was first made. Introduced to England by Edward VII.
home (n.) Look up home at Dictionary.com
Old English ham "dwelling, house, estate, village," from Proto-Germanic *haimaz (cognates: Old Frisian hem "home, village," Old Norse heimr "residence, world," heima "home," Danish hjem, Middle Dutch heem, German heim "home," Gothic haims "village"), from PIE root *tkei- "to settle, dwell, be home" (cognates: Sanskrit kseti "abides, dwells," Armenian shen "inhabited," Greek kome, Lithuanian kaimas "village;" Old Church Slavonic semija "domestic servants").
'Home' in the full range and feeling of [Modern English] home is a conception that belongs distinctively to the word home and some of its Gmc. cognates and is not covered by any single word in most of the IE languages. [Buck]
Home stretch (1841) is originally a reference from horse racing. Home base in baseball attested by 1859 (home plate by 1867; home as the goal in a sport or game is from 1778). Home economics first attested 1899. Slang phrase make (oneself) at home "become comfortable in a place one does not live" dates from 1892. To keep the home fires burning is from a song title from 1914. To be nothing to write home about "unremarkable" is from 1907. Home movie is from 1919; home computer is from 1967.
home (v.) Look up home at Dictionary.com
1765, "to go home," from home (n.). Meaning "be guided to a destination by radio signals, etc. (of missiles, aircraft, etc.) is from 1920; it had been used earlier in reference to pigeons (1862). Related: Homed; homing. Old English had hamian "to establish in a home."
home front (n.) Look up home front at Dictionary.com
also homefront, 1918, from home (n.) + front (n.) in the military sense. A term from World War I; popularized (if not coined) by the agencies running the U.S. propaganda effort.
The battle front in Europe is not the only American front. There is a home front, and our people at home should be as patriotic as our men in uniform in foreign lands. [promotion for the Fourth Liberty Loan appearing in various U.S. magazines, fall 1918]
home page (n.) Look up home page at Dictionary.com
also homepage, 1993, from home (n.) + page (n.).
home rule (n.) Look up home rule at Dictionary.com
1860, originally in reference to Ireland, from home (n.) + rule (n.).
home run (n.) Look up home run at Dictionary.com
1856, from home (n.) + run (n.).
homebody (n.) Look up homebody at Dictionary.com
1821, from home (n.) + body.
homebound (adj.) Look up homebound at Dictionary.com
1882, from home (n.) + bound (adj.2).
homeboy (n.) Look up homeboy at Dictionary.com
"person from one's hometown," 1940s, American English, black slang, also originally with overtones of "simpleton." With many variants (compare homebuddy, homeslice, both 1980s, with meaning shading toward "good friend"). The word had been used by Ruskin (1886) with the sense "stay-at-home male," and it was Canadian slang for "boy brought up in an orphanage or other institution" (1913).
homecoming (n.) Look up homecoming at Dictionary.com
mid-13c. in literal sense of "a coming home," from home (n.) + present participle of come. Compare Old English hamcyme "return." Attested from 1935 in U.S. high school dance sense. Used earlier in Britain in reference to the annual return of natives to the Isle of Man.
homeland (n.) Look up homeland at Dictionary.com
1660s, from home (n.) + land (n.). Old English hamland meant "enclosed pasture."