Etymology
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nebbish (n.)

"ineffectual or hapless person," 1905, nebbich, from Yiddish (used as a Yiddish word in American English from 1890s), from a Slavic source akin to Czech neboh "poor, unfortunate," literally "un-endowed," from Proto-Slavic *ne-bogu-, with negative prefix (see un- (1)) + from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share." Also as an adjective.

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coprophagy (n.)

"the eating of feces," 1875, originally in reference to insane persons or animals, from Modern Latin coprophagus, from Greek koprophagos "dung-eating," from kopros "dung" (see copro-) + -phagos "eating" (from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share"). Related: Coprophagous "feeding upon dung or filth" (1826, in reference to beetles); coprophagic (1876); coprophagist (1887).

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phagocyte (n.)

"white blood cell," regarded as an organism capable of devouring what it meets, 1884, from German phagocyten (plural), coined in German in 1884 by Dr. Elias Metchnikoff (1845-1916) from Greek phago- "eating, devouring" (from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share") + -cyte "cell." Related: Phagocytic.

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polyphagia (n.)

1690s, "eating to excess," medical Latin, from Greek polyphagia "excess in eating," from polyphagos "eating to excess," from polys "much" (from PIE root *pele- (1) "to fill") + phagein "to eat" (from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share"). Attested from 1890 in the sense of "feeding on various kinds or many different kinds of food." Nativized as polyphagy (1802). Related: Polyphagic; polyphagous.

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distribute (v.)

early 15c., distributen, "to deal out or apportion, bestow in parts or in due proportion," from Latin distributus, past participle of distribuere "to divide, deal out in portions," from dis- "individually" (see dis-) + tribuere "to pay, assign, grant," also "allot among the tribes or to a tribe," from tribus (see tribe). Meaning "separate and put or place in order" is from 1550s. Related: Distributable; distributed; distributing.

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pagoda (n.)

1580s, in Burma, India, Siam, China, etc., "a sacred tower, richly adorned," pagode, pagody (modern form from 1630s), from Portuguese pagode (early 16c.), perhaps from a corruption of Persian butkada, from but "idol" + kada "dwelling." Or perhaps from or influenced by Tamil pagavadi "house belonging to a deity," from Sanskrit bhagavati "goddess," fem. of bhagavat "blessed, adorable," from *bhagah "good fortune," from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share."

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nemesis 

1570s, Nemesis, "Greek goddess of vengeance, personification of divine wrath," from Greek nemesis "just indignation, righteous anger," literally "distribution" (of what is due), related to nemein "distribute, allot, apportion one's due," from PIE root *nem- "assign, allot; take." The notion is "divine allotment to everyone of his share of fortune, good or bad." With a lower-case -n-, in the sense of "retributive justice," attested from 1590s. General sense of "anything by which it seems one must be defeated" is by 1930.

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*bhag- 

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to share out, apportion; to get a share."

It forms all or part of: aphagia; Bhagavad-Gita; baksheesh; esophagus; nebbish; pagoda; -phage; phago-; -phagous; porgy; sarcophagus.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit bhajati "assigns, allots, apportions, enjoys, loves," bhagah "allotter, distributor, master, lord," bhaksati "eats, drinks, enjoys;" Persian bakhshidan "to give;" Greek phagein "to eat," literally "to have a share of food;" Old Church Slavonic bogatu "rich."

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sarcophagus (n.)

c. 1600, "type of stone used by the ancients for making coffins," from Latin sarcophagus, from Greek sarkophagos (lithos) "limestone used for coffins;" the adjective means "flesh-eating," a reference to the supposed action of this type of limestone (quarried near Assos in Troas, hence the Latin lapis Assius) in quickly decomposing bodies.

It is a compound of sarx (genitive sarkos) "flesh" (see sarcasm) + phagein "to eat" (from PIE root *bhag- "to share out, apportion; to get a share"). Related: Sarcophagal.

The "stone" sense was the earliest in English; the meaning "stone coffin," often one with inscriptions or decorative carvings is by 1705. The Latin word, shortened in Vulgar Latin to *sarcus, is the source of French cercueil, German Sarg "coffin," Dutch zerk "tombstone."

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mete (v.)

"to allot," Old English metan (West Saxon mæton), "to measure, ascertain the dimension or quantity of; measure out; compare; estimate the greatness of value of" (class V strong verb; past tense mæt, past participle meten), from Proto-Germanic *metana "to measure" (source also of Old Saxon metan, Old Frisian, Old Norse meta, Dutch meten, Old High German mezzan, German messen, Gothic mitan "to measure"), from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures." Meaning "distribute or apportion by measure" is from c. 1300 and is the surviving sense, used now exclusively with out. Related: Meted; meting.

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