Etymology
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Words related to *spek-

inspector (n.)

c. 1600, "overseer, superintendent," from Latin inspector "one who views or observes," agent noun from past participle stem of inspicere "look at, observe, view; look into, inspect, examine," from in- "into" (from PIE root *en "in") + specere "to look" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). As a police ranking between sergeant and superintendent, it dates from 1840. Related: Inspectorial (1752). Of the 18c. feminine formations, inspectrix (1703) is earlier than inspectress (1737).

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introspect (v.)

1680s, "to look into" (transitive), from Latin introspectus, past participle of introspicere "look at, look into; examine, observe attentively," from intro- "inward" (see intro-) + specere "to look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). Meaning "look within, search one's feelings or thoughts" is from 1875, a back-formation from introspection. Related: Introspected; introspecting.

introspection (n.)

1670s, "action of closely inspecting or examining," noun of action from past participle stem of Latin introspicere "to look into, look at, examine, observe attentively," from intro- "inward" (see intro-) + specere "to look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). Meaning "action of searching one's feelings or thoughts" is from 1807.

perspective (n.)

late 14c., perspectif, "the science of optics," from Old French perspective and directly from Medieval Latin perspectiva ars "science of optics," from fem. of perspectivus "of sight, optical" from Latin perspectus "clearly perceived," past participle of perspicere "inspect, look through, look closely at," from per "through" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward," hence "through") + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). The English word is also attested from early 15c. as an adjective, "pertaining to the science of optics."

The sense of "the art of drawing solid objects on a flat surface so as to give appearance of distance or depth" is attested by 1590s, probably by influence of Italian prospettiva, an artists' term. The meaning "proper or just proportion, appropriate relation in the mind of the parts of a subject to one another" is recorded by c. 1600, hence the figurative meaning "mental outlook over time" (1762).

perspicacious (adj.)

"sharp-sighted," also "of acute mental discernment," 1630s, formed as an adjective to perspicacity, from Latin perspicax "sharp-sighted, having the power of seeing through; acute," from perspicere "look through, look closely at," from per "through" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward," hence "through") + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). Related: Perspicaciously; perspicaciousness.

perspicacity (n.)

"state or character of being perspicacious; keenness of sight, clearness of understanding," 1540s, from French perspicacité (15c.) and directly from Late Latin perspicacitas "sharp-sightedness, discernment," from Latin perspicax "sharp-sighted, having the power of seeing through," from perspicere "look through, look closely at," from per "through" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward," hence "through") + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). An earlier word was perspicience "ability to see all things, infinite vision" (c. 1400).

prospect (n.)

early 15c., "act of looking into the distance, condition of facing something else or a certain direction," from Latin prospectus "distant view, look out; sight, faculty of sight," noun use of past participle of prospicere "look out on, look forward," from pro "forward" (see pro-) + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe").

The meaning "extensive view of the landscape, view of things within the reach of the eye" is from 1530s; transferred sense of "mental view or survey" is from 1620s. The meaning "that which is presented to the eye, scene" is from 1630s.

The sense of "person or thing considered promising" is from 1922, from the earlier sense of "expectation, ground of expectation," especially of advantage (1660s) on the notion of "looking forward," hence "anticipation." Hence prospects "things looked forward to." The meaning "a wide, long, straight street or avenue" is by 1866, in a Russian context, and thus often spelled prospekt.

prospective (adj.)

1580s, "characterized by looking to the future," from obsolete French prospectif and directly from Medieval Latin prospectivus "affording a prospect; pertaining to a prospect," from Latin prospect-, past-participle stem of prospicere "look out on, look forward," from pro "forward" (see pro-) + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe"). The sense of "being in prospect or expectation, looked forward to" is by 1829.

Also used as a noun in various senses: "outlook, prospect, view" (1590s); "spy glass, telescope" (17c.), from the adjectival sense of "suitable for viewing at a distance" (c. 1600). Related: Prospectively.

respect (n.)
Origin and meaning of respect

late 14c., "relationship, relation; regard, consideration" (as in in respect to), from Old French respect and directly from Latin respectus "regard, a looking at," literally "act of looking back (or often) at one," noun use of past participle of respicere "look back at, regard, consider," from re- "back" (see re-) + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe").

Meanings "feeling of esteem excited by actions or attributes of someone or something; courteous or considerate treatment due to personal worth or power." From late 15c. as "an aspect of a thing, a relative property or quality," hence "point, detail, particular feature" (1580s). With all due respect as a polite phrase introducing deferential disagreement is attested by 1670s.

respite (n.)

mid-13c., "extension of time for an action, deliberation, etc., grace period; postponement of an action, judgment, etc.," from Old French respit "delay, respect" (Modern French répit), from Latin respectus "consideration, recourse, regard," literally "act of looking back (or often) at one," noun use of past participle of respicere "look back at, regard, consider," from re- "back" (see re-) + specere "look at" (from PIE root *spek- "to observe").

A doublet of respect (n.). From early 14c. as "a reprieve, temporary cessation of hostilities, suffering, etc."

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