Etymology
Advertisement
articulate (v.)
1590s, "to divide speech into distinct parts" (earlier in a now-obsolete sense "to formally bring charges against," 1550s), from Latin articulatus, past participle of articulare "to separate into joints," also "to utter distinctly," from articulus "a part, a member, a joint" (see article).

Generalized sense of "express in words" is from 1690s. In a physical sense, "to join, to attach by joints," it is attested from 1610s. Earlier sense "to set forth in articles" (1560s) now is obsolete or nearly so. Related: Articulated; articulating.
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
articulate (adj.)
1580s in the speech sense, "divided into distinct parts," hence "clear, distinct" (1570s as "set forth in articles"), from Latin articulatus "separated into joints" (see articulate (v.)). Compare Latin articulatim (adv.) "distinctly, in clear sequence." Physical meaning "composed of segments united by joints" in English is from c. 1600. The general sense of "speaking accurately" is short for articulate-speaking (1829). Related: Articulately.
Related entries & more 
biarticulate (adj.)
"having two joints," 1806; see bi- "two" + articulate.
Related entries & more 
disarticulate (adj.)

"divided into parts," early 15c.; see dis- + articulate (adj.). Perhaps based on Medieval Latin dearticulatus.

Related entries & more 
articulated (adj.)
"jointed," 1610s, past-participle adjective from articulate (v.) in the sense "unite by means of joints." Earlier, "set forth in articles" (1550s). In reference to speech, 1704. Meaning "made distinct" is from 1855.
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
disarticulate (v.)

1808, transitive, "undo the articulation of, separate joint from joint;" see dis- "reverse, opposite of" + articulate (v.). Intransitive sense of "become separated, lose articulation" is by 1830. Related: Disarticulated; disarticulating.

Related entries & more 
*ar- 
also arə-, Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to fit together."

It forms all or part of: adorn; alarm; aristarchy; aristo-; aristocracy; arm (n.1) "upper limb of the body;" arm (n.2) "weapon;" armada; armadillo; armament; armature; armilla; armistice; armoire; armor; armory; army; art (n.) "skill as a result of learning or practice;" arthralgia; arthritis; arthro-; arthropod; arthroscopy; article; articulate; artifact; artifice; artisan; artist; coordination; disarm; gendarme; harmony; inert; inertia; inordinate; ordain; order; ordinal; ordinance; ordinary; ordinate; ordnance; ornament; ornate; primordial; subordinate; suborn.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit irmah "arm," rtih "manner, mode;" Armenian arnam "make," armukn "elbow;" Greek arti "just," artios "complete, suitable," artizein "to prepare," arthron "a joint;" Latin ars (stem art-) "art, skill, craft," armus "shoulder," artus "joint," arma "weapons;" Old Prussian irmo "arm;" German art "manner, mode."
Related entries & more 
articulation (n.)

early 15c., "a joint or joining; setting of bones," from Old French articulation, from Medieval Latin articulationem (nominative articulatio) "separation into joints," noun of action from past-participle stem of articulare "to separate (meat) into joints," also "to utter distinctly," from articulus, diminutive of artus "joint" (see article). Meaning "the uttering of articulate sounds" is from 1610s.

Related entries & more 
enunciate (v.)
1620s, "declare, express," from Latin enunciatus, properly enuntiatus, past participle of enuntiare "speak out, say, express, assert; divulge, disclose, reveal, betray," from assimilated form of ex "out" (see ex-) + nuntiare "to announce," from nuntius "messenger" (from PIE root *neu- "to shout"). Or perhaps a back-formation from enunciation. Meaning "to articulate, pronounce" is from 1759. Related: Enunciated; enunciating.
Related entries & more 
inarticulate (adj.)
c. 1600, "not clear or intelligible" (of speech); "not jointed or hinged, not composed of segments connected by joints" (in biology), from Late Latin inarticulatus "not articulate, not distinct," from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + articulatus, past participle of articulare "to separate into joints; to utter distinctly" (see articulation). Of persons, "not able to speak clearly," 1754. Related: Inarticulately; inarticulateness; inarticulable.
Related entries & more