Etymology
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abbot (n.)

Old English abbod "abbot," from Latin abbatem (nominative abbas), from Greek abbas, from Aramaic (Semitic) abba, title of honor, literally "the father, my father," emphatic state of abh "father." Spelling with -t is a Middle English Latinization. Originally a title given to any monk, later limited to the head of a monastery. The use as a surname is perhaps ironic or a nickname. The Latin fem. abbatissa is root of abbess. Related: Abbacy; abbatial; abbotship.

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abbreviate (v.)
Origin and meaning of abbreviate

mid-15c., "to make shorter," from Latin abbreviatus, past participle of abbreviare "to shorten, make brief," from ad "to" (see ad-) + breviare "shorten," from brevis "short, low, little, shallow" (from PIE root *mregh-u- "short").

Specifically of words by 1580s. Also sometimes 15c. abbrevy, from French abrevier (14c.), from Latin abbreviare. Related: Abbreviated; abbreviating.

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abbreviation (n.)
Origin and meaning of abbreviation

early 15c., abbreviacioun, "shortness; act of shortening; a shortened thing," from Old French abréviation (15c.) and directly from Late Latin abbreviationem (nominative abbreviatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of abbreviare "shorten, make brief," from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + breviare "shorten," from brevis "short, low, little, shallow" (from PIE root *mregh-u- "short").

From 1580s specifically of words. Technically a part of a word, usually the initial letter or syllable, used for the whole word but with no indication of the rest of the word (as abbr. for abbreviation or abbreviate). A contraction is made by elision of certain letters or syllables from the body of a word but still indicates its full form (as fwd. for forward; rec'd. for received).

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ABC (n.)

also a-b-c, late 13c. (spelled abece) from the first three letters of it taken as a word (compare alphabet, abecedary, Old French abecé, abecedé "alphabet," 13c.). The sense of "rudiments or fundamentals (of a subject)" is from late 14c. As a shortening of American Broadcasting Company from 1944 (in a Billboard magazine headline), earlier of Australian Broadcasting Corporation (1931). Related: ABCs.

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Abderian (n.)

by 1650s, "of or pertaining to Abdera," in Thrace, whose citizens were proverbial as provincials who would laugh at anything or anyone they didn't understand (Abderian laughter), making their town the Hellenic equivalent of Gotham (q.v.). Especially (or alternatively) as it was the birthplace of Democritus the atomist, the "Laughing Philosopher" (born c. 460 B.C.E.) who observed human follies.

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abdicate (v.)
Origin and meaning of abdicate

1540s, "to disown, disinherit (children)," from Latin abdicatus, past participle of abdicare "to disown, disavow, reject" (specifically abdicare magistratu "renounce office"), literally "proclaim as not belonging to one," from ab "off, away from" (see ab-) + dicare "proclaim" (from PIE root *deik- "to show," also "pronounce solemnly," and see diction). Meaning "divest oneself of office, privilege, etc., before the term expires" is recorded by 1610s in English (it was in classical Latin). Related: Abdicated; abdicating.

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abdication (n.)
Origin and meaning of abdication

1550s, "a disowning," from Latin abdicationem (nominative abdicatio) "voluntary renunciation, abdication," noun of action from past-participle stem of abdicare "disown, disavow, reject," from ab "off, away from" (see ab-) + dicare "proclaim" (from PIE root *deik- "to show," also "pronounce solemnly," and see diction). Sense of "resignation of inherent sovereignty" is from 1680s.

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abdomen (n.)
Origin and meaning of abdomen

1540s, "flesh or meat of the belly" (a sense now obsolete), from Latin abdomen "the belly," a word of unknown origin, Perhaps [OED, Watkins] from abdere "conceal" (from ab "off, away" + PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"), with a sense of "concealment of the viscera," or else "what is concealed" by proper dress. De Vaan, however, finds this derivation "unfounded." Anatomical sense of "part of the mammalian body between the diaphragm and the pelvis" is from 1610s. Zoological sense of "posterior division of the bodies of arthropods" is by 1725.

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abdominal (adj.)

"pertaining to the abdomen, ventral," 1550s, from medical Latin abdominalis, from abdomen (genitive abdominis); see abdomen. As a noun, "abdominal muscle," by 1961 (earlier "abdominal vein," 1928);  earlier as a fish of the order including carp, salmon, and herring (1835), so called for their ventral fins. Related: Abdominally. English in 17c. had abdominous "big-bellied."

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