early 14c., "salvation;" late 14c., "act of protecting (someone) from danger or death," verbal noun from save (v.).
By 1550s as "economy in expenditure or outlay; a reduction or lessening in expenditure." Savings "sums saved over time by the exercise of care and economy" is by 1727. Savings bank , for encouraging thrift "among people of slender means" [Century Dictionary] is by 1817; savings account is attested by 1882. S & L for savings and loan is attested from 1951.
c. 1300, "delivering from sin or death;" 1530s, "delivering or preserving from peril;" present-participle adjective from save (v.). The notion in saving grace is "spiritual gifts necessary to salvation;" the non-Christian sense (by 1903) is moral or mental, indicating something that redeems or exempts from censure.
"except for; but for; minus," also "with due respect or consideration for" (one's honor, etc.), late 14c.; see save (prep.).
c. 1300, saveour, "one who delivers or rescues from peril," also a title of Jesus Christ, from Old French sauveour, from Late Latin salvatorem (nominative salvator) "a saver, preserver," originally and chiefly Church Latin, with reference to Christ (source also of Spanish salvador, Italian salvatore), from salvatus, past participle of salvare "to save" (see save (v.)). In the New Testament used of both Jesus and God.
In the Christian sense, the Latin noun is a translation of Greek sōtēr "savior." In English, it replaced Old English hælend, literally "healing," likely a loan-translation from Latin, a noun use of the present participle of hælan (see heal). Middle English also had salvatour "Jesus Christ," also "a rescuer" (c. 1300) from the Latin, and compare saver. The conservatism of liturgy sustained the -our spelling (see -or).
The old spelling saviour still prevails even where other nouns in -our, esp. agent-nouns, are now spelled with -or, the form savior being regarded by some as irreverent. [Century Dictionary, 1895]
"instinctive knowledge of the right course of action in any circumstance, faculty of knowing just what to do and how to do it," 1815 (Scott), a French phrase in English, literally "to know (how) to do," from savoir "to know" (from Latin sapere; see sapient) + faire (from Latin facere "to make, do;" from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). French also has savoir-vivre "knowledge of and ability in the usages of polite society; knowledge of customs in the world," which turns up in English writers, occasionally, in italics.
figurative for a puritan attitude toward the arts at least since Shaw (1916), from the name of Girolamo Savonarola (1452-1498), Dominican monk famous for his fierce opposition to moral licence and Church corruption.
c. 1200, savour, "agreeable flavor; agreeable smell; pleasure, delight," from Old French savor "flavor, taste; sauce, seasoning; delight, pleasure," from Latin saporem (nominative sapor) "taste, flavor," related to sapere "to have a flavor" (see sapient). By c. 1300 as the flavor of a thing in any sense. From late 14c. as "taste as a property of matter."
mid-13c., savouren, "give pleasure to;" c. 1300, have a pleasant smell," from Old French savorer "to taste, breathe in; appreciate, care for," from Late Latin saporare, from Latin sapor (see savor (n.)). Of things, "to have a flavor or taste," early 14c., also figurative. The sense of "perceive by sense of taste" is early 15c. Related: Savored; savoring.