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cry (v.)

mid-13c., "yell (something) out, utter" (transitive); c. 1300, "beg, implore; speak earnestly and loudly; advertise by calling out," from Old French crier, from Vulgar Latin *critare, from Latin quiritare "to wail, shriek" (source of Italian gridare, Old Spanish cridar, Spanish and Portuguese gritar), which is of uncertain origin.

Perhaps it is a variant of quirritare "to squeal like a pig," from *quis, echoic of squealing. Ancient folk etymology explained it as "to call for the help of the Quirites," the Roman constabulary.

The meaning was extended 13c. to the sense "shed tears" that had formerly been in weep, which it largely replaced by 16c., via the notion of "utter a loud, vehement, inarticulate sound." To cry (one's) eyes out "weep inordinately" is by 1704.

Most languages, in common with English, use the general word for "cry out, shout, wail" to also mean "weep, shed tears to express pain or grief." Romance and Slavic, however, use words for this whose ultimate meaning is "beat (the breast)," compare French pleurer, Spanish llorar, both from Latin plorare "cry aloud," but probably originally plodere "beat, clap the hands." Also Italian piangere (cognate with French plaindre "lament, pity") from Latin plangere, originally "beat," but especially of the breast, as a sign of grief. Related: Cried; crying

cry (n.)

late 13c., "an announcement, proclamation;" c. 1300, "any loud or passionate utterance; any loud or inarticulate sound from a human or beast," also "entreaty, prayer," from cry (v.). By 1852 as "a fit of weeping;" from 1540s as "word or phrase used in battle." From 1530s as "the yelping of hounds in the chase."

The notion in far cry "a great distance, a long way" seems to be "calling distance;" compare out of cry "out of calling distance" (mid-14c.); within cry of "within calling distance" (1630s). Far cry itself seems to have been a Scottish phrase popularized by Scott ("Rob Roy," 1817), which notes that "The expression of a 'far cry to Lochow,' was proverbial."

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Definitions of cry
1
cry (v.)
utter a sudden loud cry;
Synonyms: shout / shout out / call / yell / scream / holler / hollo / squall
cry (v.)
shed tears because of sadness, rage, or pain;
Synonyms: weep
cry (v.)
utter aloud; often with surprise, horror, or joy;
Synonyms: exclaim / cry out / outcry / call out / shout
cry (v.)
proclaim or announce in public;
before we had newspapers, a town crier would cry the news
Synonyms: blazon out
cry (v.)
demand immediate action;
This situation is crying for attention
cry (v.)
utter a characteristic sound;
The cat was crying
cry (v.)
bring into a particular state by crying;
2
cry (n.)
a loud utterance; often in protest or opposition;
Synonyms: outcry / call / yell / shout / vociferation
cry (n.)
a loud utterance of emotion (especially when inarticulate);
a cry of rage
Synonyms: yell
cry (n.)
a slogan used to rally support for a cause;
a cry to arms
Synonyms: war cry / rallying cry / battle cry / watchword
cry (n.)
a fit of weeping;
had a good cry
cry (n.)
the characteristic utterance of an animal;
From wordnet.princeton.edu