Etymology
Advertisement
loon (n.1)
large diving bird (especially the Great Northern Diver), 1630s, apparently an alteration of loom in this sense, which is from a Scandinavian source (compare Norwegian lom, from Old Norse lomr "loon").
Related entries & more 
Advertisement
loon (n.2)
mid-15c., lowen, louen "rascal, worthless person, boor," of uncertain origin, perhaps from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German; compare Dutch loen "stupid person" (16c.). The modern sense "crazy person" is by influence of loony.
Related entries & more 
loony (adj.)

also loonie, looney, luny, "crazy; silly and eccentric," 1853, American English, short for lunatic, but also influenced by loon (n.2) and perhaps loon (n.1), the bird being noted for its wild cry and method of escaping from danger. As a noun by 1884, from the adjective.

Slang loony bin "insane asylum" is by 1909. Looney left in reference to holders of political views felt to be left-wing in the extreme is from 1977. Looney Tunes, Warner Bros. studios' animated cartoon series, dates from 1930.

Related entries & more 
ember-goose (n.)

also embergoose, "loon," 1744, from Norwegian emmer-gaas, perhaps so called from its appearing on the coast in the ember-days before Christmas.

Related entries & more 
diver (n.)

"one who or that which dives," c. 1500 (the sense seems to be "rope-dancer"), mid-13c. as a surname; agent noun from dive (v.). As a type of bird that dives (especially a loon) from c. 1500.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
wage (n.)
c. 1300, "a payment for services rendered, reward, just deserts;" mid-14c., "salary paid to a provider of service," from Anglo-French and Old North French wage (Old French gage) "pledge, pay, reward," from Frankish *wadja- or another Germanic source (compare Old English wedd "pledge, agreement, covenant," Gothic wadi "pledge"), from Proto-Germanic *wadi- (see wed (v.)).

Also from mid-14c., "a pledge, guarantee, surety" (usually in plural), and (c. 1400) "a promise or pledge to meet in battle." The "payment for service" sense by late 14c. extended to allotments of money paid at regular intervals for continuous or repeated service. Traditionally in English wages were payment for manual or mechanical labor and somewhat distinguished from salary or fee. Modern French cognate gages (plural) means "wages of a domestic," one of a range of French "pay" words distinguished by class, such as traitement (university professor), paye, salaire (workman), solde (soldier), récompense, prix. The Old English word was lean, related to loan and representing the usual Germanic word (Gothic laun, Dutch loon, German Lohn). Wage-earner attested from 1871.
Related entries & more