Etymology
Advertisement
lee (n.)

Middle English le, leoh, from Old English hleo "shelter, cover, defense, protection," from Proto-Germanic *khlewaz (source also of Old Norse hle, Danish , Old Saxon hleo, Dutch lij "lee, shelter"). The original sense is uncertain; it might have been "warm" (compare German lau "tepid," Old Norse hly "shelter, warmth"), and Watkins traces it to a PIE *kle-wo-, a suffixed variant form of the root *kele- (1) "warm."

Nautical sense "that part of the hemisphere to which the wind is directed" (c. 1400) is of Scandinavian origin, from the notion of the side of the ship opposite that which receives the wind as the sheltered side. As an adjective, 1510s, from the noun. The lee shore is that toward which the wind blows. Middle English also had lewth "warmth, shelter," Old English hleowþ, with Proto-Germanic abstract noun suffix *-itho (see -th (2)). Also compare lukewarm.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
tide (v.)

"to carry (as the tide does)," 1620s, from tide (n.). Usually with over. Earlier it meant "to happen" (Old English; see tidings). Related: Tided; tiding.

Related entries & more 
tide (n.)

Old English tīd "point or portion of time, due time, period, season; feast-day, canonical hour," from Proto-Germanic *tīdi- "division of time" (source also of Old Saxon tid, Dutch tijd, Old High German zit, German Zeit "time"), from PIE *di-ti- "division, division of time," suffixed form of root *da- "to divide."

Meaning "rise and fall of the sea" (mid-14c.) probably is via notion of "fixed time," specifically "time of high water;" either a native evolution or from Middle Low German getide (compare Middle Dutch tijd, Dutch tij, German Gezeiten "flood tide, tide of the sea"). Old English seems to have had no specific word for this, using flod and ebba to refer to the rise and fall. Old English heahtid "high tide" meant "festival, high day."

Related entries & more 
Lee-Enfield 

type of rifle used by the British army early 20c., 1902 (adj.); 1910 (n.), named for J.P. Lee (1831-1904), U.S. designer of bolt action + Enfield (q.v.).

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Christmas-tide (n.)

also Christmastide, "period from Christmas Eve to Epiphany," 1620s, from Christmas + tide (n.).

Related entries & more 
rip-tide (n.)

also riptide, 1862, "strong tidal flow in a coastal channel, etc.;" see rip (n.2). Since early 20c. it has been used mostly of strong currents flowing straight out from shore, which are not tides, and the attempt to correct it in that sense to rip current dates from 1936.

Related entries & more 
alee (adv.)

"on or toward the lee side of a ship or boat," late 14c., from a- (1) + lee (n.). Nautical, opposed to aweather.

Related entries & more 
ebb (n.)

Old English ebba "falling of the tide, low tide," perhaps from Proto-Germanic *af- (source also of Old Frisian ebba, Old Saxon ebbiunga, Middle Dutch ebbe, Dutch eb, German Ebbe), from PIE root *apo- "off, away." Figurative sense of "decline, decay, gradual diminution" is from late 14c. Ebb-tide is from 1776.

Related entries & more 
tidewater (n.)

also tide-water, 1772, "water affected by the normal ebb and flow of the tide," from tide (n.) + water (n.1). In reference to the lowland regions of the Virginia shore of the western Chesapeake Bay, 1832.

Related entries & more