1660s, "one who or that which descends," agent noun from descend. Specifically in typography, "part of a letter that extends below the body," 1802. Earlier in this sense was descendant (1670s).
"to adjust or regulate the proportions of; to form according to suitable or harmonious proportions," late 14c., proporciounen, from proportion (n.) and in part from Old French proporcioner and directly from Medieval Latin proportionare. Related: Proportioned; proportioning.
c. 1200, ounen, ahnen, "to possess, have; rule, be in command of, have authority over;" from Old English geagnian, from root agan "to have, to own" (see owe), and in part from the adjective own (q.v.). It became obsolete after c. 1300, but was revived early 17c., in part as a back-formation of owner (mid-14c.), which continued. From c. 1300 as "to acknowledge, concede, admit as a fact," said especially of things to one's disadvantage. To own up "make full confession" is from 1853. Related: Owned; owning.