sooth (n.)
Old English soð "truth, justice, righteousness, rectitude; reality, certainty," noun use of soð (adj.) "true, genuine, real; just, righteous," originally *sonð-, from Proto-Germanic *santhaz (cognates: Old Norse sannr, Old Saxon soth, Old High German sand "true," Gothic sunja "truth").

The group is related to Old English synn "sin" and Latin sontis "guilty" (truth is related to guilt via "being the one;" see sin (v.)), from PIE *es-ont- "being, existence," thus "real, true," from present participle of root *es-, the s-form of the verb "to be" (see be), preserved in Latin sunt "they are" and German sind. Archaic in English, it is the root of modern words for "true" in Swedish (sann) and Danish (sand). In common use until mid-17c., then obsolete until revived as an archaism early 19c. by Scott, etc. Used for Latin pro- in translating compounds into Old English, such as soðtacen "prodigy," soðfylgan "prosequi."
soothe (v.)
Old English soðian "show to be true," from soð "true" (see sooth). Sense of "quiet, comfort, mollify" is first recorded 1690s, via notion of "to assuage one by asserting that what he says is true" (i.e. to be a yes-man), a sense attested from 1560s (and compare Old English gesoð "a parasite, flatterer"). Meaning "reduce the intensity" (of a pain, etc.) is from 1711. Related: Soothed; soothing.
soothfast (adj.)
"truthful," Old English soðfæst "true, trustworthy, honest, just righteous;" see sooth (n.) + -fast. Related: Old English soðfæstnes "truthfulness, fairness, fidelity;" soðfæstlic "true, sincere;" soðfæstlice "truly, honestly."
soothing (adj.)
1590s, "flattering," from present participle of soothe. Sense of "mollifying" is from 1746. Related: Soothingly.
soothsay (v.)
c.1600, back-formation from soothsayer. As a noun from 1540s.
soothsayer (n.)
mid-14c., zoþ ziggere (Kentish), "one who speaks truth,;" late 14c., sothseggere, "fortune-teller;" see sooth + say. Old English had soðsagu "act of speaking the truth."
sooty (adj.)
mid-13c., from soot + -y (2). Related: Sootily; sootiness.
sop (n.)
Old English sopp- "bread soaked in some liquid," (in soppcuppe "cup into which sops are put"), from Proto-Germanic *supp-, related to Old English verb suppan (see sup (v.2)), probably reinforced by Old French soupe (see soup (n.)). Meaning "something given to appease" is from 1660s, a reference to the sops given by the Sibyl to Cerberus in the "Aeneid."
sop (v.)
Old English soppian, from the source of sop (n.). Related: Sopped; sopping.
sopaipilla (n.)
also sopapilla, by 1983, from Mexican Spanish, ultimately from Old Spanish sopa "food soaked in liquid," from a Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *sup- (see sup (v.2)).
soph (n.)
shortened form of sophomore, 1778; from 1660s as short for sophister.
Sophia
fem. proper name, from Greek sophia "skill, knowledge of, acquaintance with; sound judgement, practical wisdom; cunning, shrewdness; philosophy," also "wisdom personified," abstract noun from sophos "wise" (see sophist). Saint Sophia in ancient church names and place names in the East is not necessarily a reference to a person; the phrase also is the English translation of the Greek for "divine wisdom, holy wisdom," to which churches were dedicated.
Sophie
French form of Sophia (q.v.).
sophism (n.)
early 15c., earlier sophime (mid-14c.), "specious but fallacious argument devised for purposes of deceit or to exercise one's ingenuity," from Old French sophime "a fallacy, false argument" (Modern French sophisme), from Latin sophisma, from Greek sophisma "clever device, skillful act, stage-trick," from stem of sophizesthai "become wise" (see sophist).
sophist (n.)
"one who makes use of fallacious arguments," mid-15c., earlier sophister (late 14c.), from Latin sophista, sophistes, from Greek sophistes "a master of one's craft; a wise or prudent man, one clever in matters of daily life," from sophizesthai "to become wise or learned," from sophos "skilled in a handicraft, cunning in one's craft; clever in matters of everyday life, shrewd; skilled in the sciences, learned; clever; too clever," of unknown origin. Greek sophistes came to mean "one who gives intellectual instruction for pay," and at Athens, contrasted with "philosopher," it became a term of contempt.
Sophists taught before the development of logic and grammar, when skill in reasoning and in disputation could not be accurately distinguished, and thus they came to attach great value to quibbles, which soon brought them into contempt. [Century Dictionary]
sophistic (adj.)
1540s, from Latin sophisticus, from Greek sophistikos "like a sophist, sophistical," from sophistes (see sophist). Related: Sophistical (late 15c.); sophistically (late 14c.).
sophisticate (v.)
c.1400, "make impure by admixture," from Medieval Latin sophisticatus, past participle of sophisticare (see sophistication). From c.1600 as "corrupt, delude by sophistry;" from 1796 as "deprive of simplicity." Related: Sophisticated; sophisticating. As a noun meaning "sophisticated person" from 1921.
sophisticated (adj.)
c.1600, "mixed with a foreign substance, impure; no longer simple or natural," past participle adjective from sophisticate (v.). Of persons, with a positive sense, "worldly-wise, discriminating, cultured," from 1895.
sophistication (n.)
early 15c., "use of sophistry; fallacious argument intended to mislead; adulteration; an adulterated or adulterating substance," from Medieval Latin sophisticationem (nominative sophisticatio), noun of action from past participle stem of sophisticare "adulterate, cheat quibble," from Latin sophisticus "of sophists," from Greek sophistikos "of or pertaining to a sophist," from sophistes "a wise man, master, teacher" (see sophist). Meaning "wordly wisdom, refinement, discrimination" is attested from 1850.
sophistry (n.)
"specious but fallacious reasoning," mid-14c., from Old French sophistrie (Modern French sophisterie), from Medieval Latin sophistria, from Latin sophista, sophistes (see sophist). "Sophistry applies to reasoning as sophism to a single argument" [Century Dictionary].
Sophocles
Athenian tragic poet (c.496-406 B.C.E.), the name is Greek Sophokles, literally "famed for wisdom," from sophos "wise" (see sophist) + *-kles "fame" (see Damocles). Related: Sophoclean.
sophomore (n.)
1680s, "student in the second year of university study," literally "arguer," altered from sophumer (1650s, from sophume, archaic variant form of sophism), probably by influence of folk etymology derivation from Greek sophos "wise" + moros "foolish, dull." The original reference might be to the dialectic exercises that formed a large part of education in the middle years. At Oxford and Cambridge, a sophister (from sophist with spurious -er as in philosopher) was a second- or third-year student (what Americans would call a "junior" might be a senior sophister).
sophomoric (adj.)
"characteristic of a sophomore" (regarded as self-assured and opinionated but crude and immature), 1806, from sophomore + -ic.
Sophronia
fem. proper name, from Greek sophronia, from sophron (genitive sophronos) "discreet, prudent, sensible, having control over sensual desires, moderate, chaste," literally "of sound mind," from sos "safe, sound, whole" + phren "midriff, heart, mind" (see phreno-).
sophrosyne (n.)
the quality of wise moderation; Greek, "prudence, moderation in desires, discretion, temperance," from sophron "of sound mind, prudent, temperate" (see Sophronia).
sopor (n.)
Latin, "deep sleep, lethargy," from PIE *swep-os-, suffixed form of root *swep- (1) "to sleep" (see Somnus).
soporific (adj.)
"tending to produce sleep," 1680s, from French soporifique (17c.), formed in French from Latin sopor (genitive soporis) "deep sleep" (see sopor). As a noun from 1722. Earlier as an adjective was soporiferous (1580s as "characterized by excessive sleep," c.1600 as "soporific").
sopping (adj.)
"very wet," 1877, from sop (v.) "to drench with moisture" (1680s), from sop (n.).
soppy (adj.)
"very wet," 1823, from sop + -y (2). Meaning "sentimental" first recorded 1918. Related: Soppiness.
soprano (n.)
1738, "the highest singing voice," ranging easily through the two octaves above middle C, from Italian soprano "the treble in music," literally "high," from sopra "above," from Latin supra, fem. ablative singular of super (see super-). Meaning "a singer having a soprano voice" is from 1738. As an adjective from 1730. Soprano saxophone is attested from 1859.
sora (n.)
small, short-billed North American bird species, the Carolina rail, 1705, probably from a native name.
Sorb (n.)
1843, from German Sorbe, from Slavic Serb, the national designation. Slavic people surviving in Lusatia, eastern Saxony, also known as Wends. Related: Sorbian (1836); earlier Sorabian (1788), from Medieval Latin Sorabi.
sorb (n.)
"fruit of the service tree," 1520s, from French sorbe, from Latin sorbum "service-berry" (small, edible fruit of the European mountain ash), from sorbus, of uncertain origin.
sorbet (n.)
1580s, "cooling drink of fruit juice and water," from French sorbet (16c.), probably from Italian sorbetto, from Turkish serbet (see sherbet). Perhaps influenced in form by Italian sorbire "to sip." Meaning "semi-liquid water ice as a dessert" first recorded 1864.
sorbic (adj.)
1815, in sorbic acid, so called because it was first isolated from the berries of the mountain ash (see sorb).
Sorbonne
1560, from Sorbon, place name in the Ardennes. Theological college in Paris founded early 13c. by Robert de Sorbon (b.1201), chaplain and confessor of Louis IX. Influential 16c.-17c., suppressed during the Revolution.
sorcerer (n.)
early 15c., from earlier sorcer (late 14c.), from Old French sorcier, from Medieval Latin sortarius "teller of fortunes by lot; sorcerer" (also source of Spanish sortero, Italian sortiere-; see sorcery). With superfluous -er, as in poulterer, upholsterer. Sorcerer's apprentice translates l'apprenti sorcier, title of a symphonic poem by Paul Dukas (1897) based on a Goethe ballad ("Der Zauberlehrling," 1797), but the common figurative use of the term (1952) comes after Disney's "Fantasia" (1940).
sorceress (n.)
late 14c., from Anglo-French sorceresse, from sorcer (see sorcerer).
sorcerous (adj.)
1540s, from sorcery + -ous.
sorcery (n.)
c.1300, from Old French sorcerie, from sorcier "sorcerer, wizard," from Medieval Latin sortiarius "teller of fortunes by lot; sorcerer," literally "one who influences fate or fortune," from Latin sors (genitive sortis) "lot, fate, fortune" (see sort (n.)).
sord (n.)
"flock of mallards," 15c., perhaps from sord (v.) "to take flight," from Old French sordre "arise, stand up," from Latin surgere "to rise" (see surge (n.)).
sordid (adj.)
early 15c., "festering," from Latin sordidus "dirty, filthy, foul, vile, mean, base," from sordere "be dirty, be shabby," related to sordes "dirt, filth," from PIE *swrd-e-, from root *swordo- "black, dirty" (cognates: Old English sweart "black"). Sense of "foul, low, mean" first recorded 1610s. Related: Sordidly; sordidness.
sore (adj.)
Old English sar "painful, grievous, aching, sad, wounding," influenced in meaning by Old Norse sarr "sore, wounded," from Proto-Germanic *saira- "suffering, sick, ill" (cognates: Old Frisian sar "painful," Middle Dutch seer, Dutch zeer "sore, ache," Old High German ser "painful," Gothic sair "pain, sorrow, travail"), from PIE root *sai- (1) "suffering" (cognates: Old Irish saeth "pain, sickness").

Adverbial use (as in sore afraid) is from Old English sare but has mostly died out (replaced by sorely), but remains the main meaning of German cognate sehr "very." Slang meaning "angry, irritated" is first recorded 1738.
sore (n.)
Old English sar "bodily pain or injury, wound; sickness, disease; state of pain or suffering," from root of sore (adj.). Now restricted to ulcers, boils, blisters. Compare Old Saxon ser "pain, wound," Middle Dutch seer, Dutch zeer, Old High German ser, Old Norse sar, Gothic sair.
sorehead (n.)
"mean, discontented person," 1848, American English, from sore (adj.) + head (n.). Especially in 19c. U.S. political slang, a person who is dissatisfied through lack of recognition or reward for party service (1862).
sorely (adv.)
Old English sarlice "grievously, mournfully, bitterly, painfully;" see sore (adj.) + -ly (2).
sorghum (n.)
"Indian millet," 1590s, from Modern Latin Sorghum, the genus name, from Italian sorgo "a tall cereal grass," probably from Medieval Latin surgum, suricum (12c.), perhaps a variant of Latin syricum "Syrian," as in Syricum (gramen) "(grass) of Syria," from Syria, a possible source of the plant or its grain in ancient times.
Soroptimist
international society of business women and women executives, first club formed 1921 in Oakland, Calif., U.S., from sorority + optimist, probably after the Optimist Club.
sororal (adj.)
1650s, from Latin soror "sister" (see sister) + -al (1).
sorority (n.)
1530s, "a society of women, body of women united for some purpose," from Medieval Latin sororitas "sisterhood, of or pertaining to sisters," from Latin soror "sister" (see sister). Sense of "women's society in a college or university" attested by 1887 (Alpha Delta Pi claims founding in 1851).