Etymology
Advertisement
imbrication (n.)
"an overlapping of edges" (as of roof tiles, etc.), 1640s, from French imbrication, noun of action from stem of Latin imbricare "to cover with tiles," from imbricem (nominative imbrex) "curved roof tile used to draw off rain," from imber (genitive imbris) "rain, heavy rain; rainwater," from PIE *ombh-ro- "rain" (source also of Sanskrit abhra "cloud, thunder-cloud, rainy weather," Greek ombros "rain, a shower"), from root *nebh- "moist; water" (see nebula).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
herringbone 
also herring-bone, 1650s in literal sense and also as a type of stitch, from herring + bone (n.). From 1903 as a type of cirrocumulus cloud. Earlier as a type of masonry.
Related entries & more 
stratus (n.)
"a low layer of cloud," 1803, from Latin stratus "a spreading," from noun use of past participle of sternere "to spread out, lay down, stretch out," from nasalized form of PIE root *stere- "to spread."
Related entries & more 
mammo- 

word-forming element meaning "breast," from Latin mamma "breast" (which is cognate with mamma). The form mammato-, used in cloud terminology in reference to smooth, rounded shapes, is from Latin mammatus.

Related entries & more 
skyscraper (n.)

very tall urban building, 1888, in a Chicago context, from sky (n.) + agent noun of scrape (v.). Used earlier for "ornament atop a building" (1883), "very tall man" (1857), "high-flying bird" (1840), "light sail at the top of a mast" (1794), and the name of a racehorse (1789). Compare cognate French gratte-ciel, from gratter "to scrape" + ciel "sky;" German Wolkenkratzer, from Wolke "cloud" + Kratzer "scraper."

cloud-cleaver, an imaginary sail jokingly assumed to be carried by Yankee ships. [W. Clark Russell, "Sailors' Word Book," 1883]
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
lightning (n.)
visible discharge of energy between cloud and cloud or cloud and ground, late Old English, "lightning, flash of lightning," verbal noun from lightnen "make bright," or else an extended form of Old English lihting, from leht (see light (n.)). The Old English word also meant "dawn, daybreak," and in Middle English "light of the sun, intense brightness, brilliance; the radiance of Christ." Another Middle English word for it was leven (mid-13c.), of uncertain origin, with no apparent source in Old English. (Old English had ligetung "lightning," from liget "lightning, flash of lightning." "Lightning" also was a specialized sense of lihting "lighting" and beorhtnes "brightness.")

Meaning "cheap, raw whiskey" is attested from 1781, also sometimes "gin." Lightning bug "firefly, phosphorescent beetle" is attested from 1778. Lightning rod from 1790.
Related entries & more 
nuance (n.)

"slight or delicate degree of difference in expression, feeling, opinion, etc.," 1781, from French nuance "slight difference, shade of color" (17c.), from nuer "to shade," from nue "cloud," from Gallo-Roman *nuba, from Latin nubes "a cloud, mist, vapor," from PIE *sneudh- "fog" (source also of Avestan snaoda "clouds," Latin obnubere "to veil," Welsh nudd "fog," Greek nython, in Hesychius "dark, dusky").

According to Klein, the French secondary sense is a reference to "the different colors of the clouds." In reference to color or tone, "a slight variation in shade," by 1852; of music, by 1841 as a French term in English.

Related entries & more 
nebulosity (n.)

1754, "cloudiness, haziness," from French nébulosité, from Late Latin nebulositatem (nominative nebulositas), from Latin nebulosus, from nebula "mist, vapor" (from PIE root *nebh- "cloud"). From 1761 as "faint, misty appearance surrounding certain stars."

Related entries & more 
Nubia 

region of Africa bordering the Red Sea south of Egypt, ultimately from a local word, said to be related to Coptic noubti "to weave," or from Nubian nub "gold." In the fashion sense "woman's light scarf" it is from French, from Latin nubes "cloud" (see nuance).

Related entries & more 
Niflheim 
realm of the dead in Norse mythology, from Old Norse nifl- "mist; dark" (from Proto-Germanic *nibila-, from PIE root *nebh- "cloud") + heimr "residence, world" (from Proto-Germanic *haimaz, from PIE root *tkei- "to settle, dwell, be home").
Related entries & more 

Page 4