Etymology
Advertisement
blockhouse (n.)
"detached fort blocking a landing, mountain pass, etc., 1510s, of uncertain origin; perhaps from Middle Dutch blokhuis, German Blockhaus, French blockhaus (from one of the German words), all from 16c.; see block (v.1). Later "building with an overhanging upper story with loopholes for firing through" (often a square of logs serving as a fort in rough country), which seems to connect to block (n.1). For second element, see house (n.).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
roadblock (n.)

"barrier or obstruction on a road," usually for military or police purposes, 1940, from road (n.) + block (n.2).

Related entries & more 
bloc (n.)
1903, in reference to alliances in Continental politics, from French bloc "group, block," from Old French bloc "piece of wood" (see block (n.1)).
Related entries & more 
blockhead (n.)
also block-head, "stupid person," 1540s (implied in blockheaded), from block (n.1) + head (n.); probably originally an image of the head-shaped oaken block used by hat-makers, though the insulting sense is equally old.
Related entries & more 
blockbuster (n.)

also block-buster, 1942, "large bomb" (4,000 pounds or larger, according to some sources), from block (n.1) in the "built-up city square" sense, + agent noun from bust (v.), on the notion of the widespread destruction they could cause. Entertainment sense "spectacularly successful production" is attested by 1952. U.S. sense of "real estate broker who sells a house to a black family on an all-white neighborhood," thus sparking an exodus, is from 1955.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
blockade (n.)
"the shutting up of a place by hostile ships or troops," 1690s, from block (v.1) + -ade, false French ending (the French word is blocus, 18c. in this sense, which seems to be in part a back-formation from the verb bloquer and in part influenced by Middle Dutch blokhuus; see blockhouse). Blockade-runner is from 1863.
Related entries & more 
chock (n.)

1670s, "piece of wood, block" (especially one used to prevent movement), possibly from Old North French choque "a block" (Old French çoche "log," 12c.; Modern French souche "stump, stock, block"), from Gaulish *tsukka "a tree trunk, stump."

Related entries & more 
building (n.)
c. 1300, "a structure;" late 14c., "act or process of constructing;" verbal noun from build (v.). Building-block is 1846 as "one of a set of children's play blocks;" 1849 as "temporary support on which a ship's keel rests while the ship is being constructed;" 1856 as "cinder-block, concrete block, artificial stone block used in building construction." Figurative sense "basic unit from which something is constructed" is by 1955.
Related entries & more 
klutz (n.)
1967, American English, from Yiddish klots "clumsy person, blockhead," literally "block, lump," from Middle High German klotz "lump, ball." Compare German klotz "boor, clod," literally "wooden block" (see clot (n.)).
Related entries & more 
en bloc 
French, "in a block" (see bloc).
Related entries & more 

Page 2