masc. proper name, from French, from Latin Isidorus, from Greek Isidoros, literally "gift of Isis," from Isis (see Isis) + dōron "gift" (from PIE root *do- "to give"). St. Isidore, archbishop of Seville (600-636) wrote important historical, etymological, and ecclesiastical works and in 2001 was named patron saint of computers, computer users, and the internet. Related: Isidorian.
name of a club founded by Whig politicians in London (Addison and Steele were members), 1703; so called from Christopher ("Kit") Catling, or a name similar to it, a tavernkeeper or pastry cook in London, in whose property the club first met. Hence "a size of portrait less than half length in which a hand may be shown" (1754), supposedly is because the dining room in which portraits of club members hung was too low for half-length portraits.
It was while giving a speech in Washington, to a very international audience, about the British theft of the Elgin marbles from the Parthenon. I described the attitude of the current British authorities as "niggardly." Nobody said anything, but I privately resolved — having felt the word hanging in the air a bit — to say "parsimonious" from then on. [Christopher Hitchens, "The Pernicious Effects of Banning Words," Slate.com, Dec. 4, 2006]
As an adverb, "parsimoniously, grudgingly," from 1520s. Related: Niggardliness.
late 14c., saunctite, "holiness, godliness, blessedness," from Old French sanctete, saintete, sainctete (Modern French sainteté), from Latin sanctitatem (nominative sanctitas) "holiness, sacredness," from sanctus "holy" (see saint (n.)). The meaning "sacred or hallowed character" (of marriage, the home, life, etc.) is by c. 1600, hence, in reference to those things, "inviolability."
1803, "productive working" of something, a positive word among those who used it first, though regarded as a Gallicism, from French exploitation, noun of action from exploiter (see exploit (v.)). Bad sense developed 1830s-50s, in part from influence of French socialist writings (especially Saint Simon), also perhaps influenced by use of the word in U.S. anti-slavery writing; and exploitation was hurled in insult at activities it once had crowned as praise.
It follows from this science [conceived by Saint Simon] that the tendency of the human race is from a state of antagonism to that of an universal peaceful association — from the dominating influence of the military spirit to that of the industriel one; from what they call l'exploitation de l'homme par l'homme to the exploitation of the globe by industry. [Quarterly Review, April & July 1831]
mid-14c., "removal of a saint's body or relics to a new place," also "rendering of a text from one language to another," from Old French translacion "translation" of text, also of the bones of a saint, etc. (12c.) or directly from Latin translationem (nominative translatio) "a carrying across, removal, transporting; transfer of meaning," noun of action from past-participle stem of transferre "bear across, carry over; copy, translate" (see transfer (v.)).
in St. Elmo's Fire "corposant," name given by seamen to the brushes and jets of electric light seen on the tips of masts and yard-arms, especially in storms, 1560s, from Italian fuoco di Sant'Elmo, named for the patron saint of Mediterranean sailors, a corruption of the name of St. Erasmus, an Italian bishop said to have been martyred in 303 who was invoked in the Mediterranean by sailors during storms.
1705, in reference to various popes who took the name Clement (see clement (adj.)). Saint Clement was a 1c. bishop of Rome. Clement VII was the first of the antipopes of Avignon. Especially in reference to the edition of the Vulgate issued due to Pope Clement VIII in 1592, which was the official Latin Bible text of the Catholic Church until late 20c.
1640s, "the making of distinctions, act of observing or marking a difference," from Late Latin discriminationem (nominative discriminatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of discriminare "to divide, separate" (see discriminate (v.)). Sense of "making invidious distinctions prejudicial to a class of persons" (usually based on race or color) is from 1866 in American English in the language of Reconstruction. Meaning "discernment" is from 1814.
It especially annoys me when racists are accused of 'discrimination.' The ability to discriminate is a precious facility; by judging all members of one 'race' to be the same, the racist precisely shows himself incapable of discrimination. [Christopher Hitchens, "Letters to a Young Contrarian"]
"a long time," 1821, often in phrases indicating something rarely occurring. Compare at the Greek calends (from an ancient Roman phrase alluding to the fact that the Greeks had nothing corresponding to the Roman calends), and the native in the reign of Queen Dick and Saint Geoffrey's Day "Never, there being no saint of that name," reported in Grose (1788). Nevermass "date which never comes" is from 1540s. Blue moon is suggested earliest in this couplet from 1528:
Yf they say the mone is blewe,
We must beleve that it is true.
Though this might refer to calendrical calculations by the Church. Thus the general "rareness" sense of the term is difficult to disentangle from the specific calendrical one (commonly misinterpreted as "second full moon in a calendar month," but actually a quarterly calculation). In either case, the sense of blue here is obscure. Literal blue moons do sometimes occur under extreme atmospheric conditions.