Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to urinate."
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit mehati "urinates;" Avestan maezaiti "urinates;" Greek omeikhein "to urinate;" Latin mingere "to urinate;" Armenian mizem "urinate;" Lithuanian minžu, minžti "urinate;" Old English migan "to urinate," micga "urine," meox "dung, filth."
Old English mistel "basil, mistletoe," from Proto-Germanic *mikhstilaz "mistletoe" (source also of Old Saxon mistil, Dutch mistel, Old High German mistil, German Mistel, Swedish mistel), a word of uncertain origin. According to Watkins, it is a diminutive form, so called because it "is propagated through the droppings of the missel thrush," from Germanic suffixed form *mih-stu-, "urine," hence "mist, fine rain," from PIE root *meigh- "to urinate." Missel-bird "missel thrush" is attested from 1620s.
"tubular instrument inserted to draw off urine from the bladder," c. 1600, from French cathéter, from Late Latin catheter "a catheter," from Greek katheter "surgical catheter," literally "anything let down," from stem of kathienai "to let down, thrust in," from kata "down" (see cata-) + stem of hienai "to send" (from PIE root *ye- "to throw, impel").
Earlier was cathirum (early 15c.), directly from Medieval Latin; in this sense Middle English also had argalia, via Medieval Latin from Arabic. Related: Catheterization; catheterized; catheterizing.
The substance formerly was used in place of soap, hence Old High German luhhen "to wash," Old Norse laug "hot bath, hot spring," Danish lørdag, Swedish lördag "Saturday," literally "washing-day," "the day appropriated by the Scandinavians to that exercise" [Century Dictionary]. Chamber-lye in early Modern English was the name for urine used as a detergent.
c. 1300, "freed from dregs or lees" (of ale, wine, etc.), probably literally "having stood long enough to clear," from Old French estale "settled, clear," from estal "place, fixed position," from Frankish *stal- "position," from Proto-Germanic *stol-, from PIE root *stel- "to put, stand, put in order," with derivatives referring to a standing object or place.
Cognate with Middle Dutch stel "stale" (of beer and old urine). Originally a desirable quality (in beer and wine); the meaning "not fresh" is first recorded late 15c. Figurative sense (of immaterial things) "old and trite, hackneyed" is recorded from 1560s. As a noun, "that which has become tasteless by exposure," hence "a prostitute" (in Shakespeare, etc.). Related: Staleness.
1640s, "substance or organism that shines of itself," from Latin phosphorus "light-bringing," also "the morning star" (a sense attested in English from 1620), from Greek Phosphoros "morning star," literally "torchbearer," from phōs "light," contraction of phaos "light, daylight" (related to phainein "to show, to bring to light," from PIE root *bha- (1) "to shine") + phoros "bearer," from pherein "to carry" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry," also "to bear children").
As the name of a solid, non-metallic, combustible chemical element, it is recorded from 1680, originally one among several substances so called; the word used exclusively of the element from c. 1750. It was discovered in 1669 by Henning Brand, merchant and alchemist of Hamburg, who derived it from urine. Lavoisier demonstrated it was an element in 1777. According to Flood, "It is the first element whose discoverer is known."
c. 1200, "a room in a house," usually a private one, from Old French chambre "room, chamber, apartment" (11c.), from Late Latin camera "a chamber, room" (see camera).
The Old French word and the Middle English one also were used alone and in combinations to form words for "latrine, privy" from the notion of "bedroom utensil for containing urine." In anatomy, "enclosed space in a body," from late 14c. Of machinery, "artificial cavity," from 1769. Gunnery sense "part of the bore in which the charge is placed" is from 1620s. Meaning "legislative body" is from c. 1400, an extended sense from the chambers or rooms where an assembly meets. Chamber music (1765) traditionally was that meant to be performed in smaller spaces.
DA CAMERA: of the chamber, i. e. belonging to the chamber, suitable for the chamber, designed for the chamber,—a term applied to parlor or chamber music. [Godfrey Weber's General Music Teacher," Boston, 1842]
late 14c., mudde, "moist, soft earth," cognate with and probably from Middle Low German mudde, Middle Dutch modde "thick mud," from Proto-Germanic *mud- from PIE *(s)meu-/*mu- [Buck], found in many words denoting "wet" or "dirty" (source also of Greek mydos "damp, moisture," Old Irish muad "cloud," Polish muł "slime," Sanskrit mutra- "urine," Avestan muthra- "excrement, filth"); related to German Schmutz "dirt," which also is used for "mud" in roads, etc., to avoid dreck, which originally meant "excrement." Welsh mwd is from English. The older word is fen.
Meaning "lowest or worst of anything" is from 1580s. As a word for "coffee," it is hobo slang from 1925; as a word for "opium" from 1922. Mud-puppy "salamander" is by 1855, American English; the mud-dauber wasp was so called by 1856. The children's mud-pie is attested from 1788. Mud-flat "muddy, low-lying ground near a shore" is by 1779. Mud-room "room for removing wet or muddy footwear" is by 1938.
The expression clear as mud (that is, "not clear at all") is by 1796. To throw or hurl mud "make disgraceful accusations" is from 1762. To say (one's) name is mud and mean "(one) is discredited" is recorded from 1823, from mud in obsolete sense of "a stupid twaddling fellow" (1708). Mud in your eye as a toast is recorded from 1912, American English.