hive (n.) Look up hive at
Old English hyf "beehive," from Proto-Germanic *hufiz (cognates: Old Norse hufr "hull of a ship"), from PIE *keup- "round container, bowl" (cognates: Sanskrit kupah "hollow, pit, cave," Greek kypellon "cup," Latin cupa "tub, cask, vat"). Figurative sense of "swarming, busy place" is from 1630s. As a verb, of bees, etc., "to form themselves into a hive," c. 1400; "to put bees in a hive," mid-15c.