"male seminal fluid," late 14c., probably from Old French esperme "seed, sperm" (13c.) and directly from Late Latin sperma "seed, semen," from Greek sperma "the seed of plants, also of animals," literally "that which is sown," from speirein "to sow, scatter," from PIE *sper-mn-, from root *sper- "to spread, to sow" (see sparse). Sperm bank is attested from 1963. For sperm whale see spermaceti.
"excellent person or thing," 1897, a sense extended from coveted varieties of apple that were raised from seed (so called since late 14c.), from Middle English pipin "seed of certain fruits" (see pip (n.1)).
"umbelliferous plant with yellow flowers, extensively cultivated for its aroma and oils," Middle English dille, from Old English dile "dill, anise," a Germanic word of unknown origin (cognates: Old Saxon dilli, Middle Dutch and Dutch dille, Swedish dill, German Dill). Dill-pickle is recorded from 1899.
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to sow."
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Latin serere "to sow;" Old Church Slavonic sejo, sejati; Lithuanian sju, sti "to sow;" Old English sawan "to sow;" Old Prussian semen "seed," Lithuanian smenys "seed of flax," Old Church Slavonic seme, Old High German samo, German Same;Old English sed, sd "that which may be sown; an individual grain of seed."
The modern meaning "shabby, no longer fresh or new" is attested by 1739, probably in reference to the appearance of a flowering plant that has run to seed; compare figurative expressions go to seed (by 1817), etc., originally of plants, "to cease flowering as seeds develop." Related: Seediness.
also hay-seed, 1570s, "grass seed shaken out of hay," from hay + seed (n.). In U.S. slang sense of "comical rustic" it dates from 1875. To have hayseed in (one's) hair was a common mid-19c. way in U.S. to indicate a country person.
The opinion of the court was delivered by Justice Hunt; the chief justice, in whose hair the Ohio hayseed still lingers, delivering a dissenting opinion (etc.) [The Chronicle, New York, Nov. 12, 1874]
word-forming element meaning "berry, seed," or something shaped like them, from Latinized form of Greek kokkos "a grain, a seed," especially "kermes-berry, gall of the kermes oak" (actually an insect), which yields scarlet dye, a word of unknown origin, perhaps from a non-Greek source.
"reproductive body in flowerless plants corresponding to the seeds of flowering ones," 1836, from Modern Latin spora, from Greek spora "a seed, a sowing, seed-time," related to sporas "scattered, dispersed," sporos "a sowing," from PIE *spor-, variant of root *sper- "to spread, sow" (see sparse).