interrogatory (adj.) Look up interrogatory at
"containing or expressing a question," 1570s, from Late Latin interrogatorius "consisting of questions," from past participle stem of Latin interrogare "to ask, question, inquire; interrogate judicially, cross-examine," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + rogare "to ask, to question" (see rogation).
interrupt (v.) Look up interrupt at
c. 1400, "to interfere with a legal right," from Latin interruptus, past participle of interrumpere "break apart, break off, break through," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + rumpere "to break" (see rupture (n.), and compare corrupt (adj.)). Meaning "to break into, break in upon, disturb the action of" (especially of speech) is from early 15c. in English (it is also in Latin). Related: Interrupted; interrupting.
interrupt (n.) Look up interrupt at
"action of interrupting," 1956, originally in computing in reference to programs, from interrupt (v.).
interruption (n.) Look up interruption at
late 14c., "a break of continuity," from Latin interruptionem (nominative interruptio) "a breaking off, interruption, interval," noun of action from past participle stem of interrumpere "to break apart, break off" (see interrupt (v.)). Meaning "a breaking in upon some action" is from c. 1400; that of "a pause, a temporary cessation" is early 15c.
intersect (v.) Look up intersect at
1610s (trans.), back-formation from intersection, or else from Latin intersectus, past participle of intersecare "intersect, cut asunder," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + secare "to cut" (see section (n.)). Intransitive sense is from 1847. Related: Intersected; intersecting.
intersect (n.) Look up intersect at
"point of intersection," 1850, from intersect (v.) or from Latin intersectum, neuter past pasticiple of intersecare. Earlier (1650s) it was used for "an insect."
intersection (n.) Look up intersection at
1550s, "act or fact of crossing," from Middle French intersection (14c.) and directly from Latin intersectionem (nominative intersectio) "a cutting asunder, intersection," noun of action from past participle stem of intersecare "intersect, cut asunder," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + secare "to cut" (see section (n.)). In English originally a term in geometry; meaning "crossroads, a place of crossing" is from 1864. Related: Intersectional.
intersex (n.) Look up intersex at
"one having characteristics of both sexes," 1917, from German intersexe (1915); see inter- "between" + sex (n.). Coined by German-born U.S. geneticist Richard Benedict Goldschmidt (1878-1958). Intersexual is from 1866 as "existing between the sexes, pertaining to both sexes;" from 1916 as "having both male and female characteristics." Related: intersexuality.
interspace (n.) Look up interspace at
"space between" (any two things), early 15c., from Late Latin interspatium, from inter "between" (see inter-) + spatium (see space (n.)). As a verb, "fill or occupy the space between," 1832. Related: Interspaced; interspacing.
interspecific (adj.) Look up interspecific at
"existing between species," 1889, from inter- "between" + specific, used here as an adjective to go with species.
intersperse (v.) Look up intersperse at
1560s, from Latin interspersus "strewn, scattered, sprinkled upon," past participle of *interspergere, from inter- "between" (see inter-) + spargere "to scatter" (see sparse). Related: Interspersed; interspersing.
interspersion (n.) Look up interspersion at
1650s, noun of action from intersperse.
interstate (adj.) Look up interstate at
1838, American English, in reference to traffic in slaves, from inter- "between" + state (n.) in the U.S. sense. Interstate commerce is that carried on by persons in one U.S. state with persons in another. Noun sense of "an interstate highway" is attested by 1975, American English.
interstellar (adj.) Look up interstellar at
1620s, "situated between or among the stars," in reference to the night sky (modern astronomical sense is from 1670s), from inter- "between" + Latin stella "star" (see stellar). Intersiderial in the same sense is from 1650s.
interstice (n.) Look up interstice at
early 15c., from Old French interstice (14c.) and directly from Latin interstitium "interval," literally "space between," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + stem of stare "to stand," from PIE root *stā- "to stand, set down, make or be firm" (see stet). Related: Interstices.
interstitial (adj.) Look up interstitial at
"pertaining to or situated in an interstice," 1640s, from Latin interstitium "interval" (see interstice) + -al (1). Related: Interstitially.
intersubjective (adj.) Look up intersubjective at
"existing between conscious minds" [OED], 1883, from German intersubjective (1881); see inter- "between" + subjective (adj.).
interterritorial (adj.) Look up interterritorial at
also inter-territorial, 1827, from inter- "between" + territory + -al (1).
intertextuality (n.) Look up intertextuality at
by 1974 in literary criticism, from inter- "between" + textual + -ity. Related: Intertextual (1879).
intertidal (adj.) Look up intertidal at
also inter-tidal, "between the high and low water marks," 1853, from inter- + tidal (adj.).
intertribal (adj.) Look up intertribal at
also inter-tribal, 1850; see inter- "between" + tribe (n.) + -al (1).
interturb (v.) Look up interturb at
"to disturb by interruption" (obsolete), 1550s, from Latin inturbus, past participle of inturbare "disturb by interruption," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + turbare "to disturb, confuse" (see turbid). Related: Interturber (1530s).
intertwine (v.) Look up intertwine at
1640s (trans.), a hybrid from inter- + twine (v.). Intransitive sense is from 1782. Related: Intertwined; intertwining.
interurban (adj.) Look up interurban at
1883, from inter- "between" + Latin urbs "city" (see urban (adj.)).
interval (n.) Look up interval at
early 14c., "time elapsed between two actions or events," from Old French intervalle "interval, interim" (14c.), earlier entreval (13c.) and directly from Late Latin intervallum "a space between, an interval of time, a distance," originally "space between palisades or ramparts" [OED], from inter "between" (see inter-) + vallum "rampart, palisade, wall," which is apparently a collective form of vallus "stake," from PIE *walso- "a post" (see wall (n.)).

Metaphoric sense of "gap in time" also was in Latin. From c. 1400 in English as "a pause, an interruption in a state or activity." Musical sense "difference in pitch between two tones" is from c. 1600. Related: Intervallic.
intervene (v.) Look up intervene at
1580s, "intercept" (obsolete), a back-formation from intervention, or else from Latin intervenire "to come between, intervene; interrupt; stand in the way, oppose, hinder," from inter "between" (see inter-) + venire "to come" (see venue). Sense of "come between, fall or happen between" (of events) is from c. 1600; that of "interfere, interpose oneself between, act mediatorially" is from 1640s. Related: Intervened; intervener; intervening.
intervenient (adj.) Look up intervenient at
c. 1600, from Latin intervenientem (nominative interveniens), present participle of intervenire "to come between, interrupt," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + venire "come" (see venue). Related: Interveniently.
intervent (v.) Look up intervent at
"to come between" (obsolete), 1590s, from Latin interventus, past participle of intervenire "to come between, interrupt," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + venire "come" (see venue). Related: Intervented; interventing.
intervention (n.) Look up intervention at
early 15c., "intercession, intercessory prayer," from Middle French intervention or directly from Late Latin interventionem (nominative interventio) "an interposing, a giving security," literally "a coming between," noun of action from past participle stem of Latin intervenire "to come between, interrupt," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + venire "come" (see venue). Later "act of intervening" in any way; in 19c.-20c. often of international relations; by 1983 of interpersonal intrusions by friends or family meant to reform a life felt to be going wrong.
interventionism (n.) Look up interventionism at
1852, from intervention + -ism. Interventionist, as a noun, is recorded from 1846, originally in the international sense.
interview (n.) Look up interview at
1510s, "face-to-face meeting, formal conference," from Middle French entrevue, verbal noun from s'entrevoir "to see each other, visit each other briefly, have a glimpse of," from entre- "between" (see inter-) + Old French voir "to see" (from Latin videre; see vision). Modern French interview is from English. Journalistic sense "conversation with someone to obtain statements for publication" is from 1869 in American English.
The 'interview,' as at present managed, is generally the joint product of some humbug of a hack politician and another humbug of a newspaper reporter. ["The Nation," Jan. 28, 1869]
Meaning "personal meeting to discuss hiring or employment" is by 1921; earlier it was used in military recruiting (1918).
interview (v.) Look up interview at
in early use also enterview, enterveu, 1540s, "to have a personal meeting," from interview (n.). Meaning "have an interview with" (usually with intent to publish what is said" is from 1869. Related: Interviewed; interviewing.
interviewee (n.) Look up interviewee at
1883, from interview (v.) + -ee.
interviewer (n.) Look up interviewer at
1868, in the journalistic sense, agent noun from interview (v.).
intervocalic (adj.) Look up intervocalic at
"between vowels," 1881, from inter- "between" + Latin vocalis "a vowel" (see vowel) + -ic.
interweave (v.) Look up interweave at
1570s (trans.), hybrid from inter- + weave (v.). Intransitive sense from 1827. Related: Interweaving; interweaved; interwove; interwoven.
interwork (v.) Look up interwork at
c. 1600, a hybrid from inter- "between" + work (v.). Related: interworking. Past tense can be either interworked or interwrought.
interwoven (adj.) Look up interwoven at
1640s, past participle of interweave (q.v.).
intestacy (n.) Look up intestacy at
"condition of dying without leaving a valid will," 1740, from intestate + -acy.
intestate (adj.) Look up intestate at
late 14c., from Old French intestat (13c.) and directly from Latin intestatus "having made no will," from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + testatus, past participle of testari "make a will, bear witness" (see testament). As a noun, "one who has not made out a will," from 1650s.
intestinal (adj.) Look up intestinal at
early 15c., from medical Latin intestinalis, from Latin intestinum "an intestine, gut" (see intestine).
intestine (n.) Look up intestine at
"lower part of the alimentary canal," early 15c., from Middle French intestin (14c.) or directly from Latin intestinum "a gut," in plural (intestina), "intestines, bowels," noun use of neuter of adjective intestinus "inward, internal," from intus "within, on the inside," from PIE *entos, suffixed form of root *en "in" (see in).

Distinction of large and small intestines in Middle English was made under the terms gross and subtle. Intestine also was used as an adjective in English 16c.-19c. with a sense (as in French) of "internal, domestic, civil."
intestines (n.) Look up intestines at
"bowels," 1590s, from intestine, based on Latin intestina, neuter plural of intestinus (adj.) "internal, inward, intestine," from intus "within, on the inside," from PIE *entos, suffixed form of root *en "in" (see in (adv.)). Compare Sanskrit antastyam, Greek entosthia "bowels." The Old English word was hropp, literally "rope."
intice (v.) Look up intice at
obsolete spelling of entice. Related: Inticed; inticing.
Intifada (n.) Look up Intifada at
"Palestinian revolt," 1985, from Arabic, literally "a jumping up" (in reaction to something), from the verb intafada "to be shaken, shake oneself."
intimacy (n.) Look up intimacy at
1640s, from intimate (adj.) + -cy. Sense of "sexual intercourse" attested from 1670s but modern use is from newspaper euphemistic use (1882).
intimate (adj.) Look up intimate at
1630s, "closely acquainted, very familiar," also "inmost, intrinsic," from Late Latin intimatus, past participle of intimare "make known, announce, impress," from Latin intimus "inmost, innermost, deepest" (adj.), also used figuratively, of affections, feelings, as a noun, "close friend;" superlative of in "in" (see in- (2)). Intimate (adj.) used euphemistically in reference to women's underwear from 1904. Related: Intimately.
intimate (v.) Look up intimate at
1530s, "make known formally;" 1580s, "suggest indirectly," back-formation from intimation (which could explain the pronunciation) or else from Late Latin intimatus, past participle of intimare "to make known." The Old French verb was intimer. Related: Intimated; intimating.
intimate (n.) Look up intimate at
1650s, "familiar friend, person with whom one is intimate," from intimate (adj.). Sometimes 17c.-19c. in false Spanish form intimado. Latin intimus had a similar noun sense. Intimates as a commercial euphemism for "women's underwear" is from 1988.
intimation (n.) Look up intimation at
mid-15c., "action of making known," from Middle French intimation (14c.), from Late Latin intimationem (nominative intimatio) "an announcement," noun of action from past participle stem of Latin intimare "make known, announce, impress" (see intimate (adj.)). Meaning "action of expressing by suggestion or hint, indirect imparting of information" is from 1530s.