Etymology
Advertisement

cough (v.)

"a violent, noisy effort to expel air from the lungs," early 14c., coughen, probably in Old English but not recorded, from Proto-Germanic *kokh-(source also of Middle Dutch kochen, Middle High German kuchen), with the rough "kh" of German or of Scottish loch. Onomatopoeic. Related: Coughed; coughing.

As a noun from c. 1300, "single act of coughing." As "illness or other condition that affects the sufferer with frequent coughs or fits of coughing," by 1742. Cough-drops attested by 1829; cough-medicine by 1828. To cough up "to present, hand over" is from 1894.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of cough
1
cough (v.)
exhale abruptly, as when one has a chest cold or congestion;
The smoker coughs all day
2
cough (n.)
a sudden noisy expulsion of air from the lungs that clears the air passages; a common symptom of upper respiratory infection or bronchitis or pneumonia or tuberculosis;
Synonyms: coughing
From wordnet.princeton.edu