lingua franca (n.) Look up lingua franca at Dictionary.com
1620s, from Italian, literally "Frankish tongue." Originally a form of communication used in the Levant, a stripped-down Italian peppered with Spanish, French, Greek, Arabic, and Turkish words. The name is probably from the Arabic custom, dating back to the Crusades, of calling all Europeans Franks (see Frank). Sometimes in 17c. English sources also known as Bastard Spanish.
lingual (adj.) Look up lingual at Dictionary.com
1640s, from Medieval Latin lingualis "of the tongue," from Latin lingua "tongue," also "speech, language," from Old Latin dingua, from PIE *dnghu- "tongue" (source also of Old English tunge, Gothic tuggo "tongue;" see tongue (n.)). Altered in Latin probably in part by association with lingere "to lick."
linguine (n.) Look up linguine at Dictionary.com
1948, from Italian linguine, plural of linguina "little tongue," diminutive of lingua "tongue," from Latin lingua "tongue" (see lingual).
linguist (n.) Look up linguist at Dictionary.com
1580s, "a master of language, one who uses his tongue freely," a hybrid from Latin lingua "language, tongue" (see lingual) + -ist. Meaning "a student of language" first attested 1640s.
linguistic (adj.) Look up linguistic at Dictionary.com
1856, from French linguistique (1833); see linguist + -ic. The use of linguistic to mean "of or pertaining to language or languages" is "hardly justifiable etymologically," according to OED, but "has arisen because lingual suggests irrelevant associations." Related: linguistically.
linguistics (n.) Look up linguistics at Dictionary.com
"the science of languages," 1847; see linguistic; also see -ics.
liniment (n.) Look up liniment at Dictionary.com
early 15c., from Late Latin linimentum "a soft ointment," from Latin linire, collateral form of earlier linere "to daub, smear," from PIE root *(s)lei- "slime, slimy, sticky" (see slime (n.)).
lining (n.) Look up lining at Dictionary.com
"stuff with which garments are lined," late 14c., from present participle of Middle English linen "to line" (see line (v.1)).
link (n.) Look up link at Dictionary.com
early 15c., "one of a series of rings or loops which form a chain; section of a cord," probably from Old Norse *hlenkr or a similar Scandinavian source (compare Old Norse hlekkr "link," Old Swedish lænker "chain, link," Norwegian lenke, Danish lænke), from Proto-Germanic *khlink- (cognates: German lenken "to bend, turn, lead," gelenk "articulation, joint, link," Old English hlencan (plural) "armor"), from PIE root *kleng- "to bend, turn." Missing link between man and apes dates to 1880.
link (n.2) Look up link at Dictionary.com
"torch," 1520s, of uncertain origin, possibly from Medieval Latin linchinus, from lichinus "wick," from Greek lykhnos "portable light, lamp."
link (v.) Look up link at Dictionary.com
"bind, fasten, to couple," late 14c., believed to be from link (n.), though it is attested earlier. Related: Linked; linking.
linkage (n.) Look up linkage at Dictionary.com
1874, from link (v.) + -age.
To understand the principle of Peaucellier's link-work, it is convenient to consider previously certain properties of a linkage, (to coin a new and useful word of general application), consisting of an arrangement of six links, obtained in the following manner ... (etc.). ["Recent Discoveries in Mechanical Conservation of Motion," in "Van Nostrand's Eclectic Engineering Magazine," vol. XI, July-December 1874]
links (n.) Look up links at Dictionary.com
"undulating sandy ground," 1728, from Scottish/Northumbrian link "sandy, rolling ground near seashore," from Old English hlinc "rising ground, ridge;" perhaps from the same Proto-Germanic root as lean (v.). This type of landscape in Scotland was where golf first was played; the word has been part of the names of golf courses since at least 1728.
linnet (n.) Look up linnet at Dictionary.com
small finch-like songbird, 1530s, from Middle French linette "grain of flax," diminutive of lin "flax," from Latin linum "linen" (see linen). Flaxseed forms much of the bird's diet. Old English name for the bird was linetwige, with second element perhaps meaning "pluck." This yielded Middle English and dialectal lintwhite.
lino (n.) Look up lino at Dictionary.com
1907, short for linotype.
linoleum (n.) Look up linoleum at Dictionary.com
1860, coined by English inventor Frederick Walton (1837-1928), from Latin linum "flax, linen" (see linen) + oleum "oil" (see oil (n.)). Originally, a preparation of solidified linseed oil used to coat canvas for making floor coverings; the word was applied to the flooring material itself after 1878. The Linoleum Manufacturing Company was formed 1864.
Linotype (n.) Look up Linotype at Dictionary.com
1886, American English, trademark name (Mergenthaler Linotype Co.), from line o' type, for a composing machine invented by Ottmar Mergenthaler (1854-1899) in widespread use in newspaper production early 20c.
linseed (n.) Look up linseed at Dictionary.com
Old English linsæd "seed of flax," widely regarded in ancient times as a source of medical treatments, from lin "flax" (see linen) + sæd "seed" (see seed).
linsey-woolsey (n.) Look up linsey-woolsey at Dictionary.com
late 15c., originally a cloth woven from linen and wool; the words altered for the sake of a jingling sound. Linsey is attested from mid-15c., apparently meaning "coarse linen fabric." Some sources suggest a connection or influence from the place name Lindsey in Suffolk.
linstock (n.) Look up linstock at Dictionary.com
forked staff used for firing a cannon, 1570s, from Dutch lonstok, from lont "match" + stok "stick."
lint (n.) Look up lint at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "flax prepared for spinning," also "refuse of flax used as kindling," somehow from the source of Old English lin "flax" (see linen), perhaps from or by influence of Middle French linette "grain of flax," diminutive of lin "flax," from Latin linum "flax, linen;" Klein suggests from Latin linteum "linen cloth," neuter of adjective linteus. Later "flax refuse used as tinder or for dressing wounds" (c. 1400). Still used for "flax" in Scotland in Burns' time. Applied in American English to stray cotton fluff.
lintel (n.) Look up lintel at Dictionary.com
early 14c., from Old French lintel "threshold" (13c., Modern French linteau), of uncertain origin, probably a variant of lintier, from Vulgar Latin *limitaris "threshold," from Latin limitaris (adj.) "that is on the border," from limes (genitive limitis) "border, boundary" (see limit (n.)). Altered by influence of Latin limen "threshold."
Linux Look up Linux at Dictionary.com
computer operating system, named for Linux kernel, written 1991 by Linus Torvalds of Finland (who coined the word but did not choose it as the name).
Linzertorte (n.) Look up Linzertorte at Dictionary.com
1906, from German Linzertorte, from Linzer (adj.) "of Linz," city in Austria, + torte "tart." The city name probably is ultimately from the Germanic root for "lime tree."
lion (n.) Look up lion at Dictionary.com
late 12c., from Old French lion "lion," figuratively "hero," from Latin leonem (nominative leo) "lion; the constellation leo," from Greek leon (genitive leontos), from a non-Indo-European language, perhaps Semitic (compare Hebrew labhi "lion," plural lebaim; Egyptian labai, lawai "lioness").

A general Germanic borrowing from Latin (compare Old English leo, Anglian lea; Old Frisian lawa; Middle Dutch leuwe, Dutch leeuw; Old High German lewo, German Löwe); it is found in most European languages, often via Germanic (Old Church Slavonic livu, Polish lew, Czech lev, Old Irish leon, Welsh llew). Used figuratively from c. 1200 in an approving sense, "one who is fiercely brave," and a disapproving one, "tyrannical leader, greedy devourer." Lion's share "the greatest portion" is attested from 1701.
Lionel Look up Lionel at Dictionary.com
masc. proper name, from French, literally "young lion" (see lion).
lioness (n.) Look up lioness at Dictionary.com
c. 1300, leoness, from lion + -ess.
lionize (v.) Look up lionize at Dictionary.com
"to treat (someone) as a celebrity," a hybrid from lion + -ize. Used by Scott, 1809, and preserving lion in the sense of "person of note who is much sought-after" (1715), originally in reference to the lions formerly kept in the Tower of London (referred to from late 16c.), objects of general curiosity that every visitor in town was taken to see. Related: Lionized; lionizing.
lip (n.) Look up lip at Dictionary.com
Old English lippa, from Proto-Germanic *lepjon (cognates: Old Frisian lippa, Middle Dutch lippe, Dutch lip, Old High German lefs, German Lefze, Swedish läpp, Danish læbe), from PIE *leb- "to lick; lip" (source also of Latin labium).

French lippe is from a Germanic source. Transferred sense of "edge or margin of a cup, etc." is from 1590s. Slang sense "saucy talk" is from 1821, probably from move the lip (1570s) "utter even the slightest word (against someone)." To bite (one's) lip "show vexation" is from early 14c. Stiff upper lip as a sign of courage is from 1833. Lip gloss is attested from 1939; lip balm from 1877. Related: Lips.
lip (v.) Look up lip at Dictionary.com
c. 1600, "to kiss," from lip (n.). Meaning "to pronounce with the lips only" is from 1789. Related: Lipped; lipping.
lip service (n.) Look up lip service at Dictionary.com
"something proffered but not performed," 1640s, from lip (n.) + service (n.1). Earlier in same sense was lip-labour (1530s).
lip-read (v.) Look up lip-read at Dictionary.com
1880, back-formation from lip-reading, which is attested from 1852 in writings on educating deaf-mutes; from lip (n.) + reading.
liparo- Look up liparo- at Dictionary.com
before vowels lipar-, word-forming element meaning "oily," from Greek liparos "oily, fatty, greasy," from lipos "fat" (see lipo-).
lipase (n.) Look up lipase at Dictionary.com
class of enzymes, 1897, from French lipase (1896), from Greek lipos "fat" (see lipo- (v.)) + chemical ending -ase.
lipid (n.) Look up lipid at Dictionary.com
"organic substance of the fat group," from French lipide, coined 1923 by G. Bertrand from Greek lipos "fat, grease" (see lipo-) + chemical suffix -ide.
Lipizzan Look up Lipizzan at Dictionary.com
1911, from Lipizza, home of the former Austrian Imperial Stud; term used to designate horses originally bred there. The city is modern-day Lipica near Trieste in Slovenia (Lipizza is the Italian form of the name).
lipless (adj.) Look up lipless at Dictionary.com
c. 1400, from lip (n.) + -less. Related: Liplessly.
lipo- Look up lipo- at Dictionary.com
word-forming element meaning "fat" (n.), from Greek lipo-, comb. form of lipos "fat" (n.), from PIE root *leip- "to stick, adhere," also used to form words for "fat," see leave (v.)).
lipoma (n.) Look up lipoma at Dictionary.com
"fatty tumor" (plural lipomata), 1830, medical Latin, from Greek lipos "fat" (n.), see lipo-, + -oma.
liposuction (n.) Look up liposuction at Dictionary.com
1983, from Greek lipos "fat" (see lipo-) + suction (n.).
lipstick (n.) Look up lipstick at Dictionary.com
1880, from lip (n.) + stick (n.).
liquefaction (n.) Look up liquefaction at Dictionary.com
late 15c., from French liquéfaction, from Late Latin liquefactionem (nominative liquefactio), noun of action from past participle stem of liquefacere "to make liquid, melt" (see liquefy).
liquefy (v.) Look up liquefy at Dictionary.com
early 15c., from Old French liquefier "liquefy, dissolve," from Latin liquefacere "make liquid, melt," from liquere "be fluid" (see liquid (adj.)) + facere "to make" (see factitious).
liqueur (n.) Look up liqueur at Dictionary.com
"sweetened, flavored alcoholic liquor," 1729, from French liqueur "liquor, liquid," from Old French licor "liquid." See liquor, which is the same word but borrowed earlier.
liquid (adj.) Look up liquid at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Old French liquide "liquid, running," from Latin liquidus "fluid, liquid, moist," figuratively "flowing, continuing," from liquere "be fluid," related to liqui "to melt, flow," from PIE *wleik- "to flow, run." Of sounds, from 1630s (the Latin word also was used of sounds). Financial sense of "capable of being converted to cash" is first recorded 1818.
liquid (n.) Look up liquid at Dictionary.com
"a liquid substance," 1709, from liquid (adj.). Earlier it meant "sound of a liquid consonant" (1520s).
liquidate (v.) Look up liquidate at Dictionary.com
1570s, "to reduce to order, to set out clearly" (of accounts), from Late Latin or Medieval Latin liquidatus, past participle of liquidare "to melt, make liquid or clear, clarify," from Latin liquidus (see liquid). Sense of "clear away" (a debt) first recorded 1755. The meaning "wipe out, kill" is from 1924, possibly from Russian likvidirovat. Related: Liquidated; liquidating.
liquidation (n.) Look up liquidation at Dictionary.com
1570s, noun of action from Late Latin liquidare (see liquidate); originally as a legal term in reference to assets; of inconvenient groups of persons, 1925 in communist writings.
liquidator (n.) Look up liquidator at Dictionary.com
1825, agent noun in Latin form from liquidate.
liquidity (n.) Look up liquidity at Dictionary.com
1610s, "quality of being liquid," from Late Latin liquiditatem (nominative liquiditas), from Latin liquidus (see liquid). Meaning "quality of being financially liquid" is from 1897.