type of two-seated, four-wheeled carriage, 1743, from Landau, town in Bavaria where they first were made. The first element is the common Germanic element found in English land (n.); the identity of the second is disputed. But Klein says the vehicle name is "in reality" Spanish lando "originally a light four-wheeled carriage drawn by mules," from Arabic al-andul. "These [landaus] are complex in construction and liable to get out of order, which prevents their popular use" [Henry William Herbert ("Frank Forester"), "Hints to Horse-Keepers," New York, 1859].
early 13c., "to load, put a burden on or in; fill with something to be retained," from Old French chargier "to load, burden, weigh down," from Late Latin carricare "to load a wagon or cart," from Latin carrus "two-wheeled wagon" (see car).
Senses of "entrust," "command," and "accuse" all emerged in Middle English and were found in Old French. Sense of "rush in to attack, bear down upon" is from 1560s, perhaps through earlier meaning "load a weapon" (1540s). Meaning "impose a burden of expense" is from mid-14c. That of "to fix or ask as a price" is from 1787; meaning "hold liable for payment, enter a debt against" is by 1889. Meaning "fill with electricity" is from 1748. Related: Charged; charging.
c. 1400, "naturally inclined (to have or do something), apt, liable by disposition or tendency," from Latin pronus "bent forward, leaning forward, bent over," figuratively "inclined to, disposed," perhaps from adverbial form of pro "before, for, instead of" (see pro-) + ending as in infernus, externus.
The meaning "bending forward with the face down" is from 1570s; according to OED, the broader sense of "lying flat, in a horizontal position" (1690s) is "Permissible of things that have not an upper and under side, but improper of men and animals, unless the position is as in I" ["situated or lying face downward"]. Related: Proneness.
1580s, "subject to the authority of another" (a sense now obsolete), from Latin obnoxiosus "hurtful, injurious," from obnoxius "subject, exposed to harm," from ob "to, toward" (see ob-) + noxa "injury, hurt, damage entailing liability" (from PIE root *nek- (1) "death"). Meaning "subject to something harmful, exposed to injury" is by 1590s. The main modern meaning "offensive, hateful, highly objectionable" is a shifted sense recorded from 1670s, influenced by noxious.
Obnoxious has two very different senses, one of which (exposed or open or liable to attack or injury) requires notice because its currency is now so restricted that it is puzzling to the uninstructed. It is the word's rightful or de jure meaning, and we may hope that scholarly writers will keep it alive. [Fowler]
Related: Obnoxiously; obnoxiousness.
"accountable for one's actions, answerable" to another, for an act performed or its consequences, 1640s, from obsolete French responsible (13c., Modern French responsable, as if from Latin *responsabilis), from Latin respons-, past-participle stem of respondere "respond, answer to, promise in return," from re- "back" (see re-) + spondere "to pledge" (see sponsor (n.)).
The meaning "reliable, trustworthy" is from 1690s. It retains the sense of "obligation" in the Latin verb. Related: Responsibly.
With regard to the legal use of the word, two conceptions are often confused — namely, that of the potential condition of being bound to answer or respond in case a wrong should occur, and that of the actual condition of being bound to respond because a wrong has occurred. For the first of these responsible is properly used, and for the second liable. [Century Dictionary]
late 14c., "depending upon circumstances, not predictable with certainty, provisionally liable to exist," from Old French contingent or directly from Latin contingentem (nominative contingens) "happening; touching," in Medieval Latin "possible, contingent," present participle of contingere "to happen to one, befall, come to pass," originally "to touch" (see contact (v.)).
Meaning "not existing or occurring through necessity, happening by chance, accidental" is from 1610s. The noun is from 1540s, "thing happening by chance or by the will of a finite free agent;" as "a group forming part of a larger group" from 1727, originally especially "share of troops to be furnished by a power in a treaty or alliance," on the notion of "that which falls to one in a division or apportionment among a number."
mid-15c., militari, "pertaining to or befitting soldiers; used, done, or brought about by soldiers," from Old French militaire (14c.) and directly from Latin militaris "of soldiers or war, of military service, warlike," from miles (genitive militis) "soldier," a word of unknown origin.
Perhaps ultimately from Etruscan, or else meaning "one who marches in a troop," and thus connected to Sanskrit melah "assembly," Greek homilos "assembled crowd, throng." De Vaan writes, "It is tempting to connect mīlia [pl.] 'thousand(s)', hence *mīli-it- 'who goes with/by the thousand' ...." Related: Militarily. Old English had militisc, from Latin.
Military police is from 1827. Military age, at which one becomes liable to military service, is by 1737. Military-industrial complex was coined 1961 in the farewell speech of U.S. president Dwight D. Eisenhower.
1620s, "a critical stage in human life, a period supposed to be especially liable to remarkable change with regard to health, life or fortune," from Latin climactericus, from Greek klimaktērikos "of a critical period," from klimaktēr "rung of a ladder," figuratively "critical point of a man's life" (see climax (n.)).
By some, held to be the years that are multiples of 7 (14, 21, 28, etc.), by others only the 3rd, 5th, 7th, and ninth periods of 7 years (21, 35, 49, etc.), to which some added the 81st year. By still others it was regarded as the years that were multiples of 9. The greator grand climacteric,supposed to be especially remarkable, was the 63rd year (7x9) or the 81st (9x9).
In 19c. medicine it often especially meant "menopause." Climacteric was used earlier in English as an adjective, "pertaining to a critical period or crisis" (c. 1600; climacterical in this sense is from 1580s).
c. 1200, from a Scandinavian source (Old Norse þeir, Old Danish, Old Swedish þer, þair), originally masculine plural demonstrative pronoun, from Proto-Germanic *thai, nominative plural pronoun, from PIE *to-, demonstrative pronoun (see that). Gradually replaced Old English hi, hie, plurals of he, heo "she," hit "it" by c. 1400. Colloquial use for "anonymous people in authority" is attested from 1886. They say for "it is said" is in Milton.
The most important importation of this kind [from Scandinavian to English] was that of the pronomial forms they, them and their, which entered readily into the system of English pronouns beginning with the same sound (the, that, this) and were felt to be more distinct than the old native forms which they supplanted. Indeed these were liable to constant confusion with some forms of the singular number (he, him, her) after the vowels has become obscured, so that he and hie, him and heom, her (hire) and heora could no longer be kept easily apart. [Jespersen, "Growth and Structure of the English Language"]
edible fruit of an endogenous plant of the tropics, 1590s; in reference to the plant itself, 1690s; borrowed by Spanish or Portuguese from a West African word, possibly Wolof banana. The plant seems to be native to Southeast Asia and the East Indies; it was introduced in Africa in prehistoric times and brought to the New World from Africa in 1516.
Banana-skin is from 1851, banana-peel from 1874, both originally with reference to them being left carelessly on the ground and liable to cause a pratfall when trodden upon. The nuisance was a frequent complaint in cities, and there seems to have been a regular insurance scam targeting streetcar lines in the 1890s.
The companies that have paid damages for fraudulent claims are the Manhattan Elevated Company, New York; West End Street Railway, Boston; Chicago City Railway Company, Chicago; Illinois Central Railroad Company, Chicago. The alleged injury was the same in each case, paralysis of the lower limbs, caused by slipping on a banana peel. [Street Railway Review, Jan. 15, 1895]
Banana split is attested from 1905. Banana oil "nonsense" is slang from c. 1910; probably from earlier use as the name of a chemical substance (also called banana liquid and essence of banana) used by 1873, one of the earliest artificial flavorings. Top banana, second banana, etc. are 1950s, from show business slang use of banana for "comedian," especially in a burlesque show.