Etymology
Advertisement
Cathar (n.)

1570s, "religious puritan" (implied in Catharism), from Medieval Latin Cathari "the Pure," name taken by Novatians and other Christian sects, from New Testament Greek katharizein "to make clean," from Greek katharos "pure" (see catharsis). Especially in reference to the 12c. sects (Albigenses, etc.) in Languedoc and the Piedmont that denied the authority of Rome. Related: Catharist.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Zacchaeus 
masc. proper name, from Late Latin Zacchaeus, from Greek Zakkhaios, from Hebrew zakkay, literally "pure, innocent," from zakhah "was clean, was pure."
Related entries & more 
Manchuria 

large part of China east of Mongolia and north of Korea, named for the Manchu (literally "pure") people + -ia. Related: Manchurian. Manchurian Candidate is 1959 as a novel, 1962 as a film.

Related entries & more 
Agnes 
fem. proper name, mid-12c., from Old French Agnes, from Greek Hagne "pure, chaste," fem. of hagnos "holy, sacred" (of places); "chaste, pure; guiltless, morally upright" (of persons), from PIE *yag-no-, suffixed form of root *yag- "to worship, reverence" (see hagiology).

St. Agnes, martyred 303 C.E., is patron saint of young girls, hence the folk connection of St. Agnes' Eve (Jan. 20-21) with love divinations. In Middle English, frequently written phonetically as Annis, Annys. In U.S., among the top 50 names for girls born between 1887 and 1919.
Related entries & more 
Manchu 

1650s, member of Tungusic race of Manchuria which conquered China in 1644 and remained its ruling class until the Revolution of 1912. From a native word in the Manchu language meaning literally "pure," used as the name of the tribe descended from the Nu-chen Tartars.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
Lancaster 
1086, Loncastre, literally "Roman Fort on the River Lune," a Celtic river name probably meaning "healthy, pure." In English history, the Lancastrians or House of Lancaster in the War of the Roses were the branch of the Plantagenets descended from John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster. Lancastrian (1650s) is the usual adjective with places of that name; Lancasterian (1807) was used of the teaching methods popularized early 19c. by educator Joseph Lancaster (1778-1838).
Related entries & more 
Phoebe 

fem. proper name, originally (late 14c.), a name of Artemis as the goddess of the moon, also the moon itself (mid-15c.); from Latin Phoebe, from Greek Phoebē, from phoibos "bright, pure," a word of unknown origin. The fem. form of Phoebus, an epithet of Apollo as sun-god. Phoebe, a notable figure in the early Church, is mentioned in Romans 16:1-2. Most popular as a given name for girls born in the U.S. in the 1880s and 2010s.

Related entries & more 
Pakistan 
south Asian nation formed 1947 by division of British India, the name apparently proposed 1930s by Muslim students at Cambridge University, first element said to be an acronym from Punjab, Afghan Province, and Kashmir, three regions envisioned as forming the new state, which also made a play on Iranian pak "pure." For second element, see -stan. Related: Pakistani (1941).
Related entries & more 
Wednesday (n.)
fourth day of the week, Old English wodnesdæg "Woden's day," a Germanic loan-translation of Latin dies Mercurii "day of Mercury" (compare Old Norse Oðinsdagr, Swedish Onsdag, Old Frisian Wonsdei, Middle Dutch Wudensdach). For Woden, see Odin.

Contracted pronunciation is recorded from 15c. The Odin-based name is missing in German (mittwoch, from Old High German mittwocha, literally "mid-week"), probably by influence of Gothic, which seems to have adopted a pure ecclesiastical (i.e. non-astrological) week from Greek missionaries. The Gothic model also seems to be the source of Polish środa, Russian sreda "Wednesday," literally "middle."
Related entries & more 
Catherine 

fem. proper name, from French Catherine, from Medieval Latin Katerina, from Latin Ecaterina, from Greek Aikaterine. The -h- was introduced 16c., probably a folk etymology from Greek katharos "pure" (see catharsis). The initial Greek vowel is preserved in Russian form Ekaterina.

As the name of a type of pear, attested from 1640s. Catherine wheel (early 13c.) originally was the spiked wheel on which St. Catherine of Alexandria (martyred 307), legendary virgin from the time of Maximinus, was tortured and thus became the patron saint of spinners. Her name day is Nov. 25; a popular saint in the Middle Ages, which accounts for the enduring popularity of the given name. It was applied from 1760 to a kind of fireworks shooting from a revolving spiral tube.

Related entries & more