Etymology
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east 

Old English east, eastan (adj., adv.) "east, easterly, eastward;" easte (n.), from Proto-Germanic *aust- "east," literally "toward the sunrise" (source also of Old Frisian ast "east," aster "eastward," Dutch oost Old Saxon ost, Old High German ostan, German Ost, Old Norse austr "from the east"), from PIE root *aus- (1) "to shine," especially of the dawn. The east is the direction in which dawn breaks. For theory of shift in the geographical sense in Latin, see austral.

As one of the four cardinal points of the compass, from c. 1200. Meaning "the eastern part of the world" (from Europe) is from c. 1300. Cold War use of East for "communist states" first recorded 1951. French est, Spanish este are borrowings from Middle English, originally nautical. The east wind in Biblical Palestine was scorching and destructive (as in Ezekiel xvii.10); in New England it is bleak, wet, unhealthful. East End of London so called by 1846; East Side of Manhattan so called from 1871; East Indies (India and Southeast Asia) so called 1590s to distinguish them from the West Indies.

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Essex 
Old English East-Seaxe "East Saxons," who had a 7c. kingdom there. See east, Saxon.
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eastward (adv.)
also eastwards, Old English eastwearde; see east + -ward. As an adjective mid-15c., from the adverb.
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southeast (adv.)
Old English suðeast; see south + east. Related: Southeasterly; southeastern.
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Middle East (n.)

1899; never defined in a generally accepted way. Early use with reference to British India; later often of everything between Egypt and Iran. Hence Middle-Eastern (1903).

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Ostmark (n.)

name used in the West for the currency of the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany), 1948, from German Ost "east" (see east) + Mark, name of a unit of currency (see mark (n.2)).

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eastern (adj.)
Old English easterne "of the east, from the east; oriental; of the Eastern Orthodox Church; of the eastern part of the globe," from east + -erne, suffix denoting direction. Cognate with Old Saxon ostroni, Old High German ostroni, Old Norse austroenn. Eastern Shore of Maryland and Virginia so called from 1620s.
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northeast (n.)

also north-east, "point or direction midway between north and east," Old English norþ-east; see north + east. As an adjective, "pertaining to or proceeding from or toward the northeast," by 1739. Related: Northeastern "pertaining to or in the direction of the northeast" (late 14c.); northeastward (1550s); northeasterly (1743).

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*aus- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to shine," especially of the dawn. It forms all or part of: austral; Australia; Austria; Austro-; Aurora; east; Easter; eastern; eo-; Ostrogoth.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit usah "dawn;" Greek ēōs "dawn;" Latin Aurora "goddess of dawn," auster "south wind;" Lithuanian aušra "dawn;" Old English east "east."

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Easter (n.)
Origin and meaning of Easter

Old English Easterdæg, from Eastre (Northumbrian Eostre), from Proto-Germanic *austron-, "dawn," also the name of a goddess of fertility and spring, perhaps originally of sunrise, whose feast was celebrated at the spring equinox, from *aust- "east, toward the sunrise" (compare east), from PIE root *aus- (1) "to shine," especially of the dawn.

Bede says Anglo-Saxon Christians adopted her name and many of the celebratory practices for their Mass of Christ's resurrection. Almost all neighboring languages use a variant of Latin Pascha to name this holiday (see paschal).

Easter egg is attested by 1825, earlier pace egg (1610s). Easter bunny is attested by 1904 in children's lessons; Easter rabbit is by 1888; the paganish customs of Easter seem to have grown popular c. 1900; before that they were limited to German immigrants.

If the children have no garden, they make nests in the wood-shed, barn, or house. They gather colored flowers for the rabbit to eat, that it may lay colored eggs. If there be a garden, the eggs are hidden singly in the green grass, box-wood, or elsewhere. On Easter Sunday morning they whistle for the rabbit, and the children imagine that they see him jump the fence. After church, on Easter Sunday morning, they hunt the eggs, and in the afternoon the boys go out in the meadows and crack eggs or play with them like marbles. Or sometimes children are invited to a neighbor's to hunt eggs. [Phebe Earle Gibbons, "Pennsylvania Dutch," Philadelphia, 1882]
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