Etymology
Advertisement
row (n.1)

"series of people or things in a more or less straight line," Middle English reue, from late Old English reawe, rewe, earlier ræw "a row, line; succession, hedge-row," probably from Proto-Germanic *rai(h)waz (source also of Middle Dutch rie, Dutch rij "row;" Old High German rihan "to thread," riga "line;" German Reihe "row, line, series;" Old Norse rega "string"), which is possibly from PIE root *rei- "to scratch, tear, cut" (source also of Sanskrit rikhati "scratches," rekha "line").

The meaning "a number of houses in a line" is attested from mid-14c., according to OED chiefly Scottish and northern English. The meaning "line of seats in a theater" is by 1710. The meaning "line of plants in a field or garden" is by 1733, hence the figurative phrase hard row to hoe attested from 1823, American English.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
row (v.)

"propel (a vessel) with oars or paddles," Middle English rouen (mid-14c.), from Old English rowan (intrans.) "go by water, row" (class VII strong verb; past tense reow, past participle rowen), from Proto-Germanic *ro- (source also of Old Norse roa, Dutch roeien, West Frisian roeije, Middle High German rüejen), from PIE root *ere- "to row." The figurative phrase row against the flood "attempt what is difficult" is from mid-12c. The muscle-building rowing-machine is attested by 1848.

Related entries & more 
row (n.2)

"noisy commotion," 1746, Cambridge student slang, of uncertain origin, perhaps related to rousel "drinking bout" (c. 1600), a shortened form of carousal. Klein suggests a back-formation from rouse (n.), mistaken as a plural (compare pea from pease).

Related entries & more 
row-house (n.)

also rowhouse, 1913, American English, from row (n.1), which is attested from mid-15c. in sense of "a number of houses in a line," + house (n.).

Related entries & more 
hedgerow (n.)
also hedge-row, Old English hegeræw; see hedge (n.) + row (n.).
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
windrow (n.)
1520s, from wind (n.1) + row (n.). Because it is exposed to the wind for drying.
Related entries & more 
rowboat (n.)

also row-boat, "boat propelled by oars," 1530s, from row (v.) + boat. Similar formation in Dutch roeiboot.

Related entries & more 
rigatoni (n.)

"short, hollow, fluted tubes of pasta," 1930, literally "large ridges," from Italian rigatoni, plural of rigato, noun use of past participle of rigare "to draw a line, to make fluting," from riga "line; something cut out," from a Germanic source, from Proto-Germanic *rigon- (see row (n.1)).

Related entries & more 
rowdy (n.)

"a rough, quarrelsome person," 1808, originally "lawless backwoodsman," "Of American, but otherwise quite obscure, origin" [OED]. Perhaps from row (n.2) "noisy commotion" (itself of uncertain origin). The adjective, "having the manners of or conducting oneself like a rowdy, rough and noisy," is attested by 1819. Related: Rowdily; rowdiness; rowdyism.

Related entries & more 
corn-row (n.)

also cornrow, 1769 as "a row of corn," by 1971 as a style of hair braids, so called for the resemblance. The verb in this sense also is by 1971.

Related entries & more