Words related to dis-

derecho (n.)

1888 in reference to winds generated convectively from a downburst cluster, from American Spanish derecho "direct, straight ahead" (also "right, justice"), from Old Spanish diestro, from Latin directus "straight," past participle of dirigere "set straight," from dis- "apart" (see dis-) + regere "to direct, to guide, keep straight" (from PIE root *reg- "move in a straight line").

When, years ago, I first called public attention to this kind of straight blows peculiar to Iowa prairies in summer, I named them provisorily Iowa squalls. The term derecho, coined from the Spanish in analogy with the term tornado, and expressing the main feature of a straight blow, has been chosen to bring out the contrast with the tornado or whirl-wind to avoid further confusion of these two different storms. [Gustavus Hinrichs, "Tornadoes in Iowa," in Report of the Iowa Weather Service for the Year 1888]

the usual form of Latin dis- in Old Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Provençal, and French. In Middle English, interchanging with dis- (which in a later period displaced it), hence such form as desarmen, desdein, deshonour, desparagen, deschargen, despisen, etc.

descant (n.)

c. 1400, deschaunt, "a counterpoint added to a given melody," from Anglo-French deschaunt, Old French deschant, from Medieval Latin discantus "refrain, part-song," from Latin dis- "asunder, apart" (see dis-) + cantus "song, a singing; bird-song," from past participle stem of canere "to sing" (from PIE root *kan- "to sing").

The English spelling was partly Latinized in 16c., but it is an exception for its retention of des- in English. It is attested from 1560s in the sense of "the art of composing part-music," also "the upper part or voice." It is attested from 1570s as "a warbled song, a song with various modulations." The transferred sense of "a continued discourse or series of comments on a subject" is recorded from 1590s.

A metaphor taken from musick, where a simple air is made the subject of a composition, and a number of ornamented variations composed upon it. [Hensleigh Wedgwood, "A Dictionary of English Etymology," 1859]
descry (v.2)

mid-14c., "to proclaim, announce, make known," a word now obsolete, from Old French descrier, from des- (see dis-) + crier, from Latin quiritare "to wail, shriek" (see cry (v.)).

dessert (n.)

"a service of fruits and sweets at the close of a meal," c. 1600, from French dessert (mid-16c.) "last course," literally "removal of what has been served," from desservir "clear the table," literally "un-serve," from des- "remove, undo" (see dis-) + Old French servir "to serve" (see serve (v.)). Dessert-wine is from 1733; dessert-spoon from 1776.

detour (n.)

"a roundabout or circuitous way," 1738, from French détour, from Old French destor "side road, byway; evasion, excuse," from destorner "turn aside," from des- "aside" (see dis-) + tourner "to turn" (see turn (v.)). In 18c. usually figurative. Usually treated as a French word in English (with italics and the accent mark) until late 19c.

develop (v.)
Origin and meaning of develop

1650s, "unroll, unfold" (a sense now obsolete), from French développer. It replaced earlier English disvelop (1590s, from French desveloper); both French words are from Old French desveloper, desvoleper, desvoloper "unwrap, unfurl, unveil; reveal the meaning of, explain," from des- "undo" (see dis-) + voloper "wrap up," which is of uncertain origin, possibly Celtic or Germanic.

The modern uses are figurative and emerged in English 18c. and after: Transitive meaning "unfold more fully, bring out the potential in" is by 1750; intransitive sense of "come gradually into existence or operation" is by 1793; that of "advance from one stage to another toward a finished state" is by 1843. The intransitive meaning "become known, come to light" is by 1864, American English.

The photographic sense "induce the chemical changes necessary to cause a latent picture or image to become visible" is from 1845; the real estate sense of "convert land to practical or profitable use" is by 1865. Related: Developed; developing.Developing as an adjective in reference to poor or primitive countries or nations that are advancing in economic, industrial, and social conditions is by 1960.

devoid (adj.)

"destitute, not possessing, lacking" (with of), c. 1400, shortening of devoided, past participle of obsolete Middle English verb devoiden "to remove, void, vacate" (c. 1300), from Old French desvuidier (12c., Modern French dévider) "to empty out, flush game from, unwind, let loose (an arrow)," from des- "out, away" (see dis-) + voider "to empty," from voide "empty," from Latin vocivos "unoccupied, vacant," related to vacare "be empty," from PIE *wak-, extended form of root *eue- "to leave, abandon, give out."

di- (2)

word-forming element of Latin origin meaning "apart, asunder," the form of dis- before certain voiced consonants. As des- was a form of dis- in Old French, some Middle English words have forms in both de- and di-; compare devise, which really belongs to di- and is related to divide.


assimilated form of dis- before -f-.

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