late 14c., privatif, "characterized by absence of a quality, characterized by taking away or removal of something," from Latin privativus "denoting privation," in grammar, "negative," from privatus, past participle of privare "to deprive, rob, strip" of anything; "to deliver from" anything" (see private (adj.)).
1530s, "absence of government," from French anarchie or directly from Medieval Latin anarchia, from Greek anarkhia "lack of a leader, the state of people without a government" (in Athens, used of the Year of Thirty Tyrants, 404 B.C., when there was no archon), abstract noun from anarkhos "rulerless," from an- "without" (see an- (1)) + arkhos "leader" (see archon).
From 1660s as "confusion or absence of authority in general;" by 1849 in reference to the social theory advocating "order without power," with associations and co-operatives taking the place of direct government, as formulated in the 1830s by French political philosopher Pierre-Joseph Proudhon (1809-1865).
Either the State for ever, crushing individual and local life, taking over in all fields of human activity, bringing with it its wars and its domestic struggles for power, its palace revolutions which only replace one tyrant by another, and inevitably at the end of this development there is ... death! Or the destruction of States, and new life starting again in thousands of centers on the principle of the lively initiative of the individual and groups and that of free agreement. The choice lies with you! [Prince Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921), "The State: Its Historic Role," 1896]
Obsolete in its original sense; the transferred sense of "suffocation, extreme condition caused by lack of oxygen in the blood" is from 1778, but it is a "curious infelicity of etymology" [OED] because victims of suffocation have a pulse for some time after breathing has stopped. Formerly sometimes nativized as asphyxy. Related: Asphyctic; asphyxial.
c. 1300, "coldness of an object to the touch, relative absence of heat," from cold (adj.). Meaning "sensation produced by loss of heat from the body or some part of it" is from c. 1200.
Sense of "indisposition involving catarrhal inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose or throat" is from 1530s, so called because the symptoms resemble those of exposure to cold; compare cold (n.) in earlier senses "indisposition or disease caused by excessive exposure to cold" (early 14c.), "chills of intermittent fever" (late 14c.). To be left out in the cold in the figurative sense is from 1861.
In words from Greek, such as abysmal, adamant, amethyst; also partly nativized as a prefix of negation (asexual, amoral, agnostic). The ancient alpha privatum, denoting want or absence.
Greek also had an alpha copulativum, a- or ha-, expressing union or likeness, which is the a- expressing "together" in acolyte, acoustic, Adelphi, etc. It is from PIE root *sem- (1) "one; as one, together with."
late 14c., "peaceable, being in a state of rest, restful, tranquil, not moving or agitated," from Old French quiet and directly from Latin quietus "calm, at rest, free from exertion," from quies (genitive quietis) "rest" (from PIE root *kweie- "to rest, be quiet").
From 1510s as "peaceable, not turbulent, characterized by absence of commotion." By 1590s as "making no noise." From 1570s as "private, secret." As an adverb from 1570s. Quiet American, frequently meaning a U.S. undercover agent or spy, is from the title of Graham Greene's 1955 novel. Related: Quietly; quietness.
extinct flying reptile of the Cretaceous period, 1876 (Marsh), based on pterodactyl with the stem of Greek anodous "toothless," from an- "not, without" (see an- (1)) + odon (genitive odontos) "tooth" (from PIE root *dent- "tooth").
They are remarkable for their large size, some having a spread of wings not less than twenty-five feet. They differ widely from the Pterodactyls of the old world, especially in the absence of teeth, and hence have been placed by the writer in a new order, Pteranodontia, from the typical genus Pteranodon. [O.C. Marsh, "Principal Characters of American Pterodactyls," 1876]