short-handed (adj.) Look up short-handed at
"having too few 'hands,'" 1794, from short (adj.) + -handed. The ice hockey sense is attested from 1939.
short-lived (adj.) Look up short-lived at
1580s, from short (adj.) + past tense of live (v.).
short-order (adj.) Look up short-order at
of restaurants, from 1897, from adverbial expression in short order "rapidly, with no fuss," from short (adj.) + order (n.).
short-sighted (adj.) Look up short-sighted at
also shortsighted, 1640s, of eyesight, "myopic;" 1620s in the sense "lacking foresight;" see short (adj.) + sight (n.). Related: Shortsightedly; shortsightedness.
short-sleeve (n.) Look up short-sleeve at
1630s, from short (adj.) + sleeve. First recorded in an ordinance of Massachusetts Bay colony, forbidding "short sleeves, whereby the nakedness of the arme may be discovered."
short-term (adj.) Look up short-term at
1901, from short (adj.) + term (n.).
short-timer (n.) Look up short-timer at
"one whose term or enlistment is about to expire," 1906, from short (adj.) + time (n.) + agent noun ending -er (1).
short-wave (adj.) Look up short-wave at
in reference to radio wavelength less than c.100 meters, 1907, from short (adj.) + wave (n.).
shortage (n.) Look up shortage at
1862, American English, from short + -age.
shortbread (n.) Look up shortbread at
also short-bread, 1755, from short (see shortening) + bread (n.).
shortcake (n.) Look up shortcake at
also short-cake, 1590s, from short (see shortening) + cake (n.).
shortcoming (n.) Look up shortcoming at
1670s, from the phrase to come short "be inadequate" (1570s); see short (adj.). Related: Shortcomings.
shortcut (n.) Look up shortcut at
also short-cut, "path not as long as the ordinary way," 1610s, from short (adj.) + cut (n.). Figurative use is attested earlier (1580s).
shorten (v.) Look up shorten at
1510s, "make shorter;" 1560s, "grow shorter," from short (adj.) + -en (1); the earlier form of the verb was simply short, from Old English sceortian "to grow short, become short; run short, fail," gescyrtan "to make short."
shortening (n.) Look up shortening at
1540s, "action of making short," verbal noun from shorten. Meaning "butter or other fat used in baking" (1796) is from shorten in the sense "make crumbly" (1733), from short (adj.) in the secondary sense of "easily crumbled" (early 15c.), which perhaps arose via the notion of "having short fibers." This is the short in shortbread and shortcake.
shortfall (n.) Look up shortfall at
also short-fall, 1895; see short (adj.) + fall (v.).
shorthand (n.) Look up shorthand at
method of rapid writing, 1636, from short (adj.) in the "rapid" sense + hand (n.) "handwriting."
shortlist (v.) Look up shortlist at
"to place (someone) on the 'short list' " for advancement or preferment, 1955, from short list (n.) in this sense, which is attested by 1927.
shortly (adv.) Look up shortly at
Old English scortlice "briefly," also, in late Old English, "in short time;" from short (adj.) + -ly (2).
shortness (n.) Look up shortness at
Old English scortnes; see short (adj.) + -ness. Shortness of breath is from 1570s.
shorts (n.) Look up shorts at
"short pants," 1826, from short (adj.). Short-shorts is attested from 1946, originally men's briefs.
shortstop (n.) Look up shortstop at
1837, from short (adj.) + stop (n.). In cricket, there also is a longstop.
shorty (n.) Look up shorty at
"short person," 1888, from short (adj.) + -y (3).
Shoshone Look up Shoshone at
Uto-Aztecan people of the Great Basin; the name is of unknown origin, first applied 19c. to eastern Shoshonis of Wyoming. Related: Shoshonean.
shot (n.) Look up shot at
Old English scot, sceot "a shot, a shooting, an act of shooting; that which is discharged in shooting, what is shot forth; darting, rapid motion," from Proto-Germanic *skutan (cognates: Old Norse skutr, Old Frisian skete, Middle Dutch scote, German Schuß "a shot"), related to sceotan "to shoot" (see shoot (v.)).

Meaning "discharge of a bow, missile," also is from related Old English gesceot. Extended to other projectiles in Middle English, and to sports (hockey, basketball, etc.) 1868. Another original meaning, "payment" (perhaps literally "money thrown down") is preserved in scot-free. "Throwing down" might also have led to the meaning "a drink," first attested 1670s, the more precise meaning "small drink of straight liquor" by 1928 (shot glass by 1955). Camera view sense is from 1958. Sense of "hypodermic injection" first attested 1904; figurative phrase shot in the arm "stimulant" first recorded 1922. Meaning "try, attempt" is from 1756; sense of "remark meant to wound" is recorded from 1841. Meaning "an expert in shooting" is from 1780. To call the shots "control events, make decisions" is American English, 1922, perhaps from sport shooting. Shot in the dark "uninformed guess" is from 1885. Big shot "important person" is from 1861.
shot (adj.) Look up shot at
early 15c., past participle adjective from shoot (v.). Meaning "wounded or killed by a bullet or other projectile" is from 1837. Figurative sense "ruined, worn out" is from 1833.
shotgun (n.) Look up shotgun at
1821, American English, from shot (n.) in the sense of "lead in small pellets" (1770) + gun (n.). As distinguished from a rifle, which fires bullets. Shotgun wedding first attested 1903, American English. To ride shotgun is 1963, from custom of having an armed man beside the driver on the stagecoach in Old West movies to ward off trouble.
shotten (adj.) Look up shotten at
"having shot its spawn," and accordingly of inferior value, mid-15c., past participle adjective from shoot (v.). Originally of fish; applied to persons, with sense of "exhausted by sickness," from 1590s.
should Look up should at
c. 1200, from Old English sceolde, past tense of sceal (see shall). Preserves the original notion of "obligation" that has all but dropped from shall.
shoulda Look up shoulda at
verbal phrase, 1902, representing casual (American) pronunciation of should have.
shoulder (n.) Look up shoulder at
Old English sculdor "shoulder," from West Germanic *skuldro (cognates: Middle Dutch scouder, Dutch schouder, Old Frisian skoldere, Middle Low German scholder, Old High German scultra, German Schulter), of unknown origin, perhaps related to shield (n.). Meaning "edge of the road" is attested from 1933. Cold shoulder (Neh. ix:29) translates Latin humerum recedentum dare in Vulgate (but see cold shoulder). Shoulder-length, of hair, is from 1951.
shoulder (v.) Look up shoulder at
c. 1300, "to push with the shoulder," from shoulder (n.). Meaning "take a burden" first recorded 1580s. The military sense is from 1590s. Related: Shouldered; shouldering.
shout (v.) Look up shout at
c. 1300, schowten "to call or cry out loudly," of unknown origin; perhaps from the root of shoot (v.) on the notion of "throw the voice out loudly," or related to Old Norse skuta "a taunt" (compare scout (v.2)). Related: Shouted; shouting.
shout (n.) Look up shout at
late 14c., from shout (v.).
shove (v.) Look up shove at
Old English scufan "push away, thrust, push with violence" (class II strong verb; past tense sceaf, past participle scoven), from Proto-Germanic *skeub-, *skub- (cognates: Old Norse skufa, Old Frisian skuva, Dutch schuiven, Old High German scioban, German schieben "to push, thrust," Gothic af-skiuban), from PIE root *skeubh- "to shove" (cognates: scuffle, shuffle, shovel; likely cognates outside Germanic include Lithuanian skubti "to make haste," skubinti "to hasten"). Related: Shoved; shoving.

Replaced by push in all but colloquial and nautical usage. Shove off "leave" (1844) is from boating. Shove the queer (1859) was an old expression for "to counterfeit money." Shove it had an earlier sense of "depart" before it became a rude synonym for stick it (by 1941) with implied destination.
shove (n.) Look up shove at
c. 1300; see shove (v.).
shovel (n.) Look up shovel at
Old English scofl, sceofol "shovel," related to scufan (see shove (v.)), from Proto-Germanic *skublo (cognates: Old Saxon skufla, Swedish skovel, Middle Low German schufle, Middle Dutch shuffel, Dutch schoffel, Old High German scuvala, German Schaufel). Shovel-ready, with reference to construction projects, is attested by 2006.
shovel (v.) Look up shovel at
mid-15c., from shovel (n.). Related: Shoveled; shoveling. Compare German schaufeln, verb from noun.
shovelful (n.) Look up shovelful at
1530s, from shovel (n.) + -ful.
show (v.) Look up show at
Old English sceawian "to look at, see, gaze, behold, observe; inspect, examine; look for, choose," from Proto-Germanic *skauwojan (cognates: Old Saxon skauwon "to look at," Old Frisian skawia, Dutch schouwen, Old High German scouwon "to look at;" Dutch schoon, Gothic skaunjai "beautiful," originally "conspicuous"), from Proto-Germanic root *skau- "behold, look at," from PIE *skou-, variant of root *skeue- "to pay attention, perceive" (see caveat).

Causal meaning "let be seen; put in sight, make known" evolved c. 1200 for unknown reasons and is unique to English (German schauen still means "look at"). Spelling shew, popular 18c. and surviving into early 19c., represents obsolete pronunciation (rhymes with view). Horse racing sense is from 1903, perhaps from an earlier sense in card-playing.
show (n.) Look up show at
c. 1300, "act of exhibiting to view," from show (v.). Sense of "appearance put on with intention to deceive" is recorded from 1520s. Meaning "display, spectacle" is first recorded 1560s; that of "ostentatious display" is from 1713 (showy is from 1712). Sense of "entertainment program on radio or TV" is first recorded 1932. Meaning "third place in a horse race" is from 1925, American English (see the verb).

Show of hands is attested from 1789; Phrase for show "for appearance's sake" is from c. 1700. Show business is attested from 1850; shortened form show biz used in "Billboard" from 1942. Actor's creed the show must go on is attested from 1890. Show-stopper is from 1926; show trial first recorded 1937.
show up (v.) Look up show up at
1826, "to disgrace through exposure," see show (v.) + up (adv.). Meaning "to put in an appearance, be present" is from 1888.
show-and-tell (n.) Look up show-and-tell at
elementary school teaching tool, 1948, American English.
show-off (n.) Look up show-off at
1776, "a display;" see show (v.) + off (adv.). From 1801 as "a deliberate and ostentatious display;" in reference to the person who makes such a display, attested from 1924. The verbal phrase is first recorded 1793 as "make a conspicuous and obvious display." Noun showing-off is from 1874.
show-place (n.) Look up show-place at
one much-visited for beauty or fineness, 1794, from show (v.) + place (n.).
showboat (n.) Look up showboat at
also show-boat, 1838, "river boat on which theatrical performances are given," from show (n.) + boat (n.). The verb meaning "to show off" is attested from 1951.
showcase (n.) Look up showcase at
"glass case for exhibiting valuable things," 1835, from show (v.) + case (n.2). In the extended sense, it is attested from 1937. The verb is first recorded 1945. Related: Showcased; showcasing.
showdown (n.) Look up showdown at
also show-down, 1873 in card-playing (especially poker) a slang term for the act of laying down the hands face-up, from show (v.) + down (adv.). Figurative sense of "final confrontation" is from 1904.
shower (n.1) Look up shower at
Old English scur "a short fall of rain, storm, tempest; fall of missiles or blows; struggle, commotion; breeze," from Proto-Germanic *skuraz (cognates: Old Norse skur, Old Saxon and Old Frisian scur "fit of illness;" Old High German scur, German Schauer "shower, downpour;" Gothic skura, in skura windis "windstorm"), from PIE root *kew-(e)ro- "north, north wind" (cognates: Latin caurus "northwest wind;" Old Church Slavonic severu "north, north wind;" Lithuanian šiaurus "raging, stormy," šiaurys "north wind," šiaure "north").

Of blood, tears, etc., from c. 1400. Of meteors from 1835. Sense of "bath in which water is poured from above" first recorded 1851 (short for shower-bath, itself attested from 1803). Meaning "large number of gifts bestowed on a bride" (1904, American English colloquial) later was extended to the party at which it happens (1926). Shower curtain attested from 1914.
shower (v.) Look up shower at
1570s, "come down in showers;" 1580s, "to discharge a shower," from shower (n.1). Intransitive sense from 1930. Related: Showered; showering.