strangle-hold (n.) Look up strangle-hold at
also stranglehold, 1893, in wrestling, from strangle (v.) + hold (n.). Figurative use by 1901.
strangler (n.) Look up strangler at
1550s, agent noun from strangle (v.).
strangulation (n.) Look up strangulation at
1540s, from Latin strangulationem (nominative strangulatio) "a choking, a suffocating," noun of action from past participle stem of strangulare (see strangle). The verb strangulate (1660s) probably is a back-formation from this. Related: Strangulated.
strap (v.) Look up strap at
"to fasten or secure with a strap," 1711, from strap (n.). Slang adjective strapped "short of money" is from 1857, from strap (n.) in the old sense of "financial credit" (1828). Meaning "to beat with a strap" is from 1735. Related: Strapped; strapping.
strap (n.) Look up strap at
1610s, "band of leather," from Scottish and/or nautical variant of strope "loop or strap on a harness" (mid-14c.), probably from Old French estrop "strap," from Latin stroppus "strap, band," perhaps via Etruscan, ultimately from Greek strophos "twisted band; a cord, rope," from strephein "to turn" (from PIE root *streb(h)- "to wind, turn"). Old English stropp, Dutch strop "halter" also are borrowed from Latin, and the Old English word might be the source of the modern one. Slang meaning "credit" is from 1828.
strap-hanger (n.) Look up strap-hanger at
also straphanger "rider on a street-car, elevated-train, bus, or subway," 1901, from strap (n.) + hanger. In reference to the hanging straps built in to cars and meant to be grasped for balance by those without seats.
strapless (adj.) Look up strapless at
1824 of shoes, 1839 of trousers, 1920 of gowns, 1931 of brassieres, from strap (n.) + -less.
strapline (n.) Look up strapline at
1960, in typography, "subhead above the main head," from strap (n.) + line (n.). In reference to a woman's undergarments, by 1973.
strapping (adj.) Look up strapping at
"tall and sturdy, robust," originally applied to women, 1650s, from present participle of strap (v.). Compare similar senses of whopping, spanking, bouncing and other present participle adjectives of violent action expressing something large in size.
strappy (adj.) Look up strappy at
of shoes, etc., by 1970, from strap (n.) + -y (2).
strata (n.) Look up strata at
c. 1700, plural of stratum.
stratagem (n.) Look up stratagem at
"artifice, trick," late 15c., from Middle French strattegeme, stratagème "trick, especially to outwit an enemy" (15c.), from Italian stratagemma, from Latin strategema "artifice, stratagem," from Greek strategema "the act of a general; military stratagem," from strategein "to be a general, command," from strategos "general" (see strategy). Related: Stratagematic; stratagemical. The second -a- is a Romanic misspelling (compare Spanish estratagema).
strategic (adj.) Look up strategic at
"pertaining to strategy, characterized by strategy," 1807, from French stratégique and directly from Greek strategikos in classical use "of or for a general; fitted for command," from strategos (see strategy). Related: Strategical; strategically (1810).
strategist (n.) Look up strategist at
1838, from French stratégiste, from stratégie (see strategy).
strategize (v.) Look up strategize at
1874, from strategy + -ize. Related: Strategized; strategizing.
strategy (n.) Look up strategy at
1810, "art of a general," from French stratégie (18c.) and directly from Greek strategia "office or command of a general," from strategos "general, commander of an army," also the title of various civil officials and magistrates, from stratos "multitude, army, expedition, encamped army," literally "that which is spread out" (from PIE root *stere- "to spread") + agos "leader," from agein "to lead" (from PIE root *ag- "to drive, draw out or forth, move"). In non-military use from 1887.
strath (n.) Look up strath at
"wide river valley between hills," 1530s, from Scottish, from Old Irish srath "wide river valley," from Old Celtic *s(t)rato-, from PIE root *stere- "to spread."
stratification (n.) Look up stratification at
1610s, from Medieval Latin stratificationem (nominative stratificatio), noun of action from past participle stem of stratificare "to form strata," from stratum "thing spread out" (see stratum) + comb. form of facere "to make" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). In sociology from 1879.
stratify (v.) Look up stratify at
1660s, from French stratifier, from Modern Latin stratificare, from stratum (see stratum). Related: Stratified; stratifying.
stratigraphy (n.) Look up stratigraphy at
"description of strata," 1865, from Latin strati-, comb. form of stratum (see stratum) + -graphy. Related: Stratigraphic; stratigraphical.
strato- Look up strato- at
before vowels strat-, word-forming element referring to layers or layering, also stratus clouds, from comb. form of Latin stratus "a spreading," from PIE root *stere- "to spread."
strato-cumulus (adj.) Look up strato-cumulus at
1898, from strato- + cumulus.
stratocracy (n.) Look up stratocracy at
"government by the army, military government," 1650s, from Greek stratos "army, encamped army," literally "that which is spread out" (from PIE root *stere- "to spread"), + -cracy "rule or government by."
stratography (n.) Look up stratography at
"description of armies," 1810, from Greek stratos "army, encamped army" (literally "that which is spread out;" from PIE root *stere- "to spread") + -graphy.
stratosphere (n.) Look up stratosphere at
1908, from French stratosphère, literally "sphere of layers," coined by French meteorologist Léon-Philippe Teisserenc de Bort (1855-1913) from Latin stratus "a spreading out" (from past participle stem of sternere "to spread out," from PIE root *stere- "to spread") + French -sphère, as in atmosphère (see sphere).

The region where the temperature increases or remains steady as you go higher. An earlier stratosphere, attested in English 1908 and coined in German 1901, was a geological term for part of the Earth's crust. It is now obsolete. Related: Stratospheric.
stratovolcano (n.) Look up stratovolcano at
coined in German (von Seebach, 1866), from strato- + volcano. So called for its layered structure.
stratum (n.) Look up stratum at
"horizontal layer," 1590s, from Modern Latin special use of Latin stratum "thing spread out, coverlet, bedspread, horse-blanket; pavement," noun uses of neuter of stratus "prostrate, prone," past participle of sternere "to spread out, lay down, stretch out," from nasalized form of PIE root *stere- "to spread."
stratus (n.) Look up stratus at
"a low layer of cloud," 1803, from Latin stratus "a spreading," from noun use of past participle of sternere "to spread out, lay down, stretch out," from nasalized form of PIE root *stere- "to spread."
straw (n.) Look up straw at
Old English streaw (rare) "stems or stalks of certain species of grains," apparently literally "that which is scattered or strewn," related to streowian (see strew), from Proto-Germanic *strawam "that which is scattered" (source also of Old Norse stra, Danish straa, Swedish strå, Old Saxon stro, Old Frisian stre, Old Dutch, Old High German stro, Dutch stroo, German Stroh "straw"), from PIE root *stere- "to spread." The notion perhaps is of dried grain stalks strewn on a floor as carpeting or bedding.

As a type of what is trifling or unimportant, attested from late 13c. Meaning "hollow tube through which a drink is sucked" is recorded from 1851. To draw straws as a means of deciding something is recorded from 1779 (the custom probably is older). As an adjective, "made of straw," mid-15c.; hence "false, sham." Straw poll is from 1932; earlier straw vote (1866). Straw hat first attested mid-15c. To clutch (or grasp or catch) at straws (1748) is what a drowning man proverbially would do. The last straw (1836 apart from the full phrase) is from the proverbial image: "it is the last straw that breaks the camel's back" (or, less often, the mare's, the horse's, or the elephant's), an image in use in English by 1755.
Let it not, however, be inferred that taxation cannot be pushed too far : it is, as the Oriental proverb says, the last straw that overloads the camel ; a small addition, if ill-timed, may overturn the whole. ["The Scots Magazine," April 1799]
straw man (n.) Look up straw man at
1590s, "doll or scarecrow made of bound straw," from straw (n.) + man (n.). Figuratively, in debates, by 1896. Man of straw "imaginary opponent" is recorded from 1620s.
strawberry (n.) Look up strawberry at
Old English streawberige, streaberie; see straw + berry. There is no corresponding compound in other Germanic languages; the reason for the name is uncertain, but perhaps it is in reference to the tiny chaff-like external seeds which cover the fruit. A cognate Old English name was eorðberge "earth-berry" (compare Modern German Erdbeere). As a color adjective from 1670s. Strawberry blonde is attested from 1884. Strawberry mark (1847) so called for its resemblance.
stray (n.) Look up stray at
"domestic animal found wandering," early 13c., from Anglo-French noun use of Old French estraié "strayed, riderless," past participle adjective from estraier "to roam, drift, run loose" (see stray (v.)).
stray (v.) Look up stray at
c. 1300, a shortening of Old French estraier "wander about, roam, drift, run loose," said of animals, especially a horse without a master, also of persons, perhaps literally "go about the streets," from estree "route, highway," from Late Latin via strata "paved road" (see street). On another theory, the Old French word is from Vulgar Latin *estragare, a contraction of *estravagare, representing Latin extra vagari "to wander outside" (see extravagant). Figurative sense of "to wander from the path of rectitude" is attested from early 14c. Related: Strayed; straying.
stray (adj.) Look up stray at
c. 1600, of animals; 19c. of persons and things, from stray (n.) and in part a shortening of astray.
streak (v.2) Look up streak at
1768, "to go quickly, to rush, run at full speed," respelling (probably by association with streak (v.1)) of streek "to go quickly" (late 14c.), originally "to stretch oneself" (mid-13c.), a northern Middle English variant of stretch (v.). Related: Streaked; streaking.
streak (n.) Look up streak at
Old English strica "line of motion, stroke of a pen" (related to strican "pass over lightly"), from Proto-Germanic *strikon- (source also of Middle Dutch streke, Dutch streek, Middle Low German streke "a stroke, line," Old High German, German strich, Gothic striks "a stroke, line"), from PIE root *streig- "to stroke, rub, press" (see strigil; also strike (v.), stroke (v.)). Sense of "long, thin mark" is first found 1560s. Meaning "a temporary run (of luck)" is from 1843.
streak (v.1) Look up streak at
"make streaks on" (transitive), 1590s, from streak (n.). Intransitive sense of "become streaked" is from 1870. Related: Streaked; streaking.
streaking (n.) Look up streaking at
"running naked in public," 1973, verbal noun from streak (v.).
streaky (adj.) Look up streaky at
1660s, from streak (n.) + -y (2). Related: Streakiness.
stream (v.) Look up stream at
early 13c., "to flow copiously," from stream (n.). Transitive sense "discharge in a stream" is from late 14c. Related: Streamed; streaming. Compare German strömen, Dutch stroomen, Danish strömme, all verbs from nouns.
stream (n.) Look up stream at
Old English stream "a course of water," from Proto-Germanic *straumaz (source also of Old Saxon strom, Old Norse straumr, Danish strøm, Swedish ström, Norwegian straum, Old Frisian stram, Dutch stroom, Old High German stroum, German Strom "current, river"), from PIE root *sreu- "to flow."

From early 12c. as "anything issuing from a source and flowing continuously." Meaning "current in the sea" (as in Gulf Stream) is recorded from late 14c., as is the sense of "steady current in a river." Stream of consciousness in lit crit first recorded 1930, originally in psychology (1855). Stream of thought is from 1890.
streamer (n.) Look up streamer at
"flag that streams in the air," late 13c., agent noun from stream (v.).
streamline (v.) Look up streamline at
1913, "give a streamline form to," from streamline (n.). From 1936 in the extended sense of "simplify and organize." Related: Streamlined; streamlining.
streamline (n.) Look up streamline at
1868, "line drawn from point to point, so that its direction is everywhere that of the motion of the fluid" [Lamb, "Hydrodynamics," 1906], from stream (n.) + line (n.). The adjective is attested from 1898, "free from turbulence," 1907 in sense of "shaped so that the flow around it is smooth."
street (n.) Look up street at
Old English stret (Mercian, Kentish), stræt (West Saxon) "street, high road," from Late Latin strata, used elliptically for via strata "paved road," from fem. past participle of Latin sternere "lay down, spread out, pave," from PIE *stre-to- "to stretch, extend," from root *stere- "to spread, extend, stretch out," from nasalized form of PIE root *stere- "to spread."

One of the few words in use in England continuously from Roman times. An early and widespread Germanic borrowing (Old Frisian strete, Old Saxon strata, Middle Dutch strate, Dutch straat, Old High German straza, German Strasse, Swedish stråt, Danish sträde "street"). The Latin is also the source of Spanish estrada, Old French estrée, Italian strada.

"The normal term in OE for a paved way or Roman road, later extended to other roads, urban streets, and in SE dialects to a street of dwellings, a straggling village or hamlet" [Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names]. Originally of Roman roads (Watling Street, Icknield Street). "In the Middle Ages, a road or way was merely a direction in which people rode or went, the name street being reserved for the made road" [Weekley].

Used since c. 1400 to mean "the people in the street;" modern sense of "the realm of the people as the source of political support" dates from 1931. The street for an especially important street is from 1560s (originally of London's Lombard-street). Man in the street "ordinary person, non-expert" is attested from 1831. Street people "the homeless" is from 1967; expression on the street "homeless" is from 1852. Street smarts is from 1971; street-credibility is from 1979. Street-sweeper as an occupation is from 1848.
street-car (n.) Look up street-car at
"passenger car for city travel," horse-drawn at first, later cable-powered, 1859, American English, from street (n.) + car (n.).
street-walker (n.) Look up street-walker at
"common prostitute," 1590s, from street (n.) + agent noun from walk (v.).
street-wise (adj.) Look up street-wise at
1951, from street + wise (adj.) "smart, savvy."
strength (n.) Look up strength at
Old English strengþu, strengð "bodily power, force, vigor, firmness, fortitude, manhood, violence, moral resistance," from Proto-Germanic *strangitho (source also of Old High German strengida "strength"), from PIE *strenk- "tight, narrow" (see string (n.)), with Proto-Germanic abstract noun suffix *-itho (see -th (2)). Compare length/long. From the same root as strong,
strengthen (v.) Look up strengthen at
late 14c., from strength + -en (1). Related: Strengthened; strengthening; strengthener. Earlier verb was simply strength (12c.).