Etymology
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bearing (n.)
mid-13c., "a carrying of oneself, deportment," verbal noun from bear (v.). Meaning "direction or point of the compass in which an object is seen or is moving" is from 1630s; to take (one's) bearings is from 1711. Mechanical sense of "part of a machine that 'bears' the friction" is from 1791.
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ball-bearing (n.)
1874, "method of lessening friction by surrounding a shaft with loose balls;" see ball (n.1) + bearing (n.). They "bear" the friction.
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child-bearing (n.)

also childbearing, "bringing forth of a child, the action of producing children," late 14c., from child + verbal noun of bear (v.). As an adjective from late 14c.

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*bher- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to carry," also "to bear children."

It forms all or part of: Aberdeen; amphora; anaphora; aquifer; auriferous; bairn; barrow (n.1) "frame for carrying a load;" bear (v.); bearing; Berenice; bier; birth; bring; burden (n.1) "a load;" carboniferous; Christopher; chromatophore; circumference; confer; conference; conifer; cumber; cumbersome; defer (v.2) "yield;" differ; difference; differentiate; efferent; esophagus; euphoria; ferret; fertile; Foraminifera; forbear (v.); fossiliferous; furtive; indifferent; infer; Inverness; Lucifer; metaphor; odoriferous; offer; opprobrium; overbear; paraphernalia; periphery; pestiferous; pheromone; phoresy; phosphorus; Porifera; prefer; proffer; proliferation; pyrophoric; refer; reference; semaphore; somniferous; splendiferous; suffer; transfer; vociferate; vociferous.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit bharati "he carries, brings," bhrtih "a bringing, maintenance;" Avestan baraiti "carries;" Old Persian barantiy "they carry;" Armenian berem "I carry;" Greek pherein "to carry," pherne "dowry;" Latin ferre "to bear, carry," fors (genitive fortis) "chance, luck," perhaps fur "a thief;" Old Irish beru/berim "I catch, I bring forth," beirid "to carry;" Old Welsh beryt "to flow;" Gothic bairan "to carry;" Old English and Old High German beran, Old Norse bera "barrow;" Old Church Slavonic birati "to take;" Russian brat' "to take," bremya "a burden," beremennaya "pregnant."

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auriferous (adj.)

"containing gold," 1727, from Latin aurifer "gold-bearing," from auri-, combining form of aurum "gold" (see aureate) + -fer "producing, bearing" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry").

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aquifer (n.)

"water-bearing layer of rock," 1897, from Latin aqui-, combining form of aqua "water" (from PIE root *akwa- "water") + -fer "bearing," from ferre "to bear, carry" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry").

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cruciferous (adj.)

"bearing a cross," 1650s, from Late Latin crucifer "cross-bearing," from Latin crux (genitive crucis) "stake, cross" (see crux). Originally in literal senses; botanical use (in reference to a symmetrical arrangement of four petals) is from 1851.

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comportment (n.)

"personal bearing, carriage, behavior, demeanor," 1590s, from French comportement "bearing, behavior," from comporter (13c.) "to behave," from Latin comportare "to bring together, collect," from com "with, together" (see com-) + portare "to carry" (from PIE root *per- (2) "to lead, pass over")

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conifer (n.)

"a plant producing cones, a plant of the order Coniferae" (which includes pine, fir, and cypress trees), 1847, from Latin conifer "cone-bearing, bearing conical fruit," from conus "cone" (see cone) + ferre "to bear, carry" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry").

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Porifera (n.)

"the sponges," as an animal division or class, 1843, Modern Latin, literally "bearing pores," neuter plural of porifer, from Latin porus "pore, opening" (see pore (n.)) + -fer "bearing" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry"). So called for the numerous pores which perforate the body-wall. Related: Poriferal; poriferous.

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