Etymology
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virtuous (adj.)
c. 1300, "characterized by vigor or strength; having qualities befitting a knight; valiant, hardy, courageous;" from Old French vertuos "righteous; potent; of good quality; mighty, valiant, brave" (12c.), from Late Latin virtuosus "good, virtuous," from Latin virtus "moral strength, high character, goodness; manliness; valor, bravery, courage (in war); excellence, worth," from vir "man" (from PIE root *wi-ro- "man").

From mid-14c. in English as "having beneficial or efficacious properties;" late 14c. (of persons) as "having excellent moral qualities; conforming to religious law." Related: Virtuously; virtuousness.
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racy (adj.)

1650s, "having a characteristic agreeable taste; having a flavor supposed to be imparted by the soil" (of wines, fruits, etc.), from race (n.2) in its older meaning "flavor" or in the sense "class of wines" + -y (2).

The extended meaning "having a quality of vigor" (1660s) led to that of "improper, risqué," attested by 1901, which probably was reinforced by the phrase racy of the soil "earthy" (1870). Related: Racily; raciness.

Figuratively, that is racy which is agreeably fresh and distinctive in thought and expression ; that is spicy which is agreeably pungent to the mind, producing a sensation comparable to that which spice produces in taste. [Century Dictionary]
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nip (v.)

late 14c., nippen, "to pinch sharply; to bite suddenly," probably from or related to Middle Low German nipen "to nip, to pinch," German nippen, Middle Dutch nipen "to pinch," Dutch nijpen, Old Norse hnippa "to prod," but the exact evolution of the stem is obscure. Related: Nipped; nipping.

Meaning "break off the tip by pinching" is from c. 1400. Sense of "blast as by frost, check the growth or vigor of" is from 1580s. To nip (something) in the bud in the figurative sense of "kill or destroy in the first stage of growth" is recorded from c. 1600. Slang nip in, nip out, etc., in which the sense of the verb is "move rapidly or nimbly" is attested from 1825.

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go (n.)

1727, "action of going," from use of go (v.) to start a race, etc. Meaning "an incident, an occurrence, affair, piece of business" is from 1796. Meaning "power of going, dash, vigor" is from 1825, colloquial, originally of horses. The sense of "an attempt, a try or turn at doing something" (as in give it a go, have a go at) is from 1825 (earlier it meant "a delivery of the ball in skittles," 1773). Meaning "something that goes, a success" is from 1876. Phrase on the go "in constant motion" is from 1843. Phrase from the word go "from the beginning" is by 1834. The go "what is in fashion" is from 1793. No go "of no use" is from 1825.

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brace (v.)
mid-14c., "to seize, grasp, hold firmly," also "wrap, enshroud; tie up, fetter," from Old French bracier "to embrace," from brace "arms" (see brace (n.)). Meaning "make tense, render firm or steady by tensing" is mid-15c., earlier in figurative sense "strengthen or comfort" (someone), early 15c., with later extension to tonics, etc. that "brace" the nerves (compare bracer "stiff drink"). To brace oneself "place oneself in the position of a brace" (in anticipation of some shock or impact) is by 1805, perhaps c. 1500. To brace up "increase the tension or vigor of" is from 1809. Related: Braced; bracing.
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smart (adj.)
late Old English smeart "painful, severe, stinging; causing a sharp pain," related to smeortan (see smart (v.)). Meaning "executed with force and vigor" is from c. 1300. Meaning "quick, active, clever" is attested from c. 1300, from the notion of "cutting" wit, words, etc., or else "keen in bargaining." Meaning "trim in attire" first attested 1718, "ascending from the kitchen to the drawing-room c. 1880" [Weekley]. For sense evolution, compare sharp (adj.).

In reference to devices, the sense of "behaving as though guided by intelligence" (as in smart bomb) first attested 1972. Smarts "good sense, intelligence," is first recorded 1968 (Middle English had ingeny "intellectual capacity, cleverness" (early 15c.)). Smart cookie is from 1948.
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nerve (n.)

late 14c., nerve, nerf, "sinew, tendon, hard cord of the body" (a sense now obsolete), also "fiber or bundle of fibers that convey the capacity to feel or move from the brain or spinal cord to the body," from Old French nerf and directly from Medieval Latin nervus "a nerve," from Latin nervus "sinew, tendon; cord, bowstring, string of a musical instrument," metathesis of pre-Latin *neuros, from PIE *(s)neu- "tendon, sinew" (source also of Sanskrit snavan- "band, sinew," Armenian neard "sinew," Greek neuron "sinew, tendon," in Galen "nerve").

The late medieval surgeons understood the nature and function of the nerves and often used nervus to denote a `nerve' in the modern sense, as well as to denote a `tendon'. There appears to have been some confusion, however, between nerves and tendons; hence, a number of instances in which nervus may be interpreted in either way or in both ways simultaneously. [Middle English Compendium] 

The secondary senses developed from meaning "strength, vigor; force, energy" (c. 1600), from the "sinew" sense. Hence the non-scientific sense with reference to feeling or courage, first attested c. 1600 (as in nerves of steel, 1869) and that of "coolness in the face of danger, fortitude under trying or critical circumstances" is by 1809. The bad sense "impudence, boldness, cheek" (originally slang) is by 1887. Latin nervus also had a figurative sense of "vigor, force, power, strength," as did Greek neuron. From the neurological sense come Nerves "condition of hysterical nervousness," attested by 1890, perhaps from 1792. To get on (someone's) nerves is from 1895. War of nerves "psychological warfare" is from 1915.

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young (adj.)

Old English geong "youthful, young; recent, new, fresh," from Proto-Germanic *junga- (source also of Old Saxon and Old Frisian jung, Old Norse ungr, Middle Dutch jonc, Dutch jong, Old High German and German jung, Gothic juggs), from PIE *yuwn-ko-, suffixed form of root *yeu- "vital force, youthful vigor" (source also of Sanskrit yuvan- "young; young man;" Avestan yuuanem, yunam "youth," yoista- "youngest;" Latin juvenis "young," iunior "younger, more young;" Lithuanian jaunas, Old Church Slavonic junu, Russian junyj "young," Old Irish oac, Welsh ieuanc "young").

From c. 1830-1850, Young France, Young Italy, etc., were loosely applied to "republican agitators" in various monarchies; also, especially in Young England, Young America, used generally for "typical young person of the nation." For Young Turk, see Turk.

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crazy (adj.)

1570s, "diseased, sickly" (a sense now obsolete); 1580s, "broken, impaired, full of cracks or flaws," from craze + -y (2). Meaning "deranged, demented, of unsound mind or behaving as so" is from 1610s. Jazz slang sense "cool, exciting" is attested by 1927. Related: Crazily; craziness.

To drive (someone) crazy is attested by 1873. To do something like crazy "with manic vigor or frequency" is by 1905. Phrase crazy like a fox has origins by 1935. Crazy Horse, name of the Teton Lakhota (Siouan) war leader (d. 1877), translates thašuka witko, literally "his horse is crazy." Crazy-quilt (1886) preserves the original "break to pieces" sense of craze (v.). Crazy bone as an alternative to funny bone is recorded by 1853.

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youth (n.)

Old English geoguð "youth; young people, junior warriors; young of cattle," related to geong "young," from Proto-Germanic *jugunthi- (source also of Old Saxon juguth, Old Frisian jogethe, Middle Dutch joghet, Dutch jeugd, Old High German jugund, German Jugend, Gothic junda "youth"), from suffixed form of PIE root *yeu- "vital force, youthful vigor" (see young (adj.)) + Proto-Germanic abstract noun suffix *-itho (see -th (2)).

According to OED, the Proto-Germanic form apparently was altered from *juwunthiz by influence of its contrast, *dugunthiz "ability" (source of Old English duguð). In Middle English, the medial -g- became a yogh, which then disappeared.

They said that age was truth, and that the young
Marred with wild hopes the peace of slavery
[Shelley]
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