Etymology
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reverse (v.)

early 14c., reversen, (transitive), "change, alter" (a sense now obsolete); late 14c., "turn (someone or something) in an opposite direction, turn the other way, turn inside out," also in a general sense, "alter to the opposite;" from Old French reverser "reverse, turn around; roll, turn up" (12c.), from Late Latin reversare "turn about, turn back," frequentative of Latin revertere "turn back, turn about; come back, return" (see revert).

From c. 1400 as "turn (something) upside down;" from early 15c. as "go backward" (intransitive). Of judicial sentences, "set aside, make void," mid-15c. In mechanics, "cause to revolve or act in a contrary direction," by 1860; the sense of "put a motor vehicle in reverse gear" is by 1902. Related: Reversed; reversing.

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wriggle (v.)

late 15c., from Middle Low German wrigglen "to wriggle," from Proto-Germanic *wrig-, from *wreik- "to turn," from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend." Related to Old English wrigian "to turn, incline, go forward."

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versant (adj.)

1640s, "busy" (with something), from Latin versantem (nominative versans), present participle of versare, literally "to turn often," frequentative of vertere "to turn," from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend." Meaning "familiar, acquainted" is from 1787.

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tergiversate (v.)

1650s, back-formation from tergiversation, or else from Latin tergiversatus, past participle of tergiversari "be evasive," literally "to turn one's back," from tergum "the back" (of unknown origin) + versare "to spin, turn," frequentative of vertere "to turn," from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend." Related: Tergiversated; tergiversating.

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converse (adj.)

"turned about, transposed, reciprocal," 1560s, originally mathematical, from Latin conversus "turned around," past participle of convertere "to turn about, turn around, transform," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + vertere "to turn" (from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend"). From 1794 as "opposite or contrary in direction." Related: Conversely.

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invert (v.)

"to turn (something) in an opposite direction; reverse the position, order, or sequence of," 1530s, from French invertir or directly from Latin invertere "turn upside down, turn about; upset, reverse, transpose," figuratively "pervert, corrupt, misrepresent," of words, "to use ironically," from in- "in, on" (from PIE root *en "in") + vertere "to turn" (from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend"). Related: Inverted; inverting; invertedly.

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volte-face 

a reversal of opinion, 1819, French (17c.), from Italian volta faccia, literally "turn face," from volta, imperative of voltare "to turn" (from Vulgar Latin *volvita, from Latin volvere "to roll," from PIE root *wel- (3) "to turn, revolve") + faccia (see face).

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versus (prep.)

mid-15c., in legal case names, denoting action of one party against another, from Latin versus "turned toward or against," past participle of vertere "to turn," from PIE *wert- "to turn, wind," from root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend."

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vert (v.)

"to turn in some direction," 1570s, from Latin vertere "to turn" from PIE root *wer- (2) "to turn, bend." As a noun meaning "one who has left the Church of England" from 1864, short for convert (v.).

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circumvolve (v.)

"to turn or cause to roll," 1640s, from Latin circumvolvere "to roll round, revolve," from circum "around, round about" (see circum-) + volvere "to turn around, roll," from PIE root *wel- (3) "to turn, revolve." Related: Circumvolved; circumvolving (which is attested from early 15c.).

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