Etymology
Advertisement

Words related to going

go (v.)

Old English gan "to advance, walk; depart, go away; happen, take place; conquer; observe, practice, exercise," from West Germanic *gaian (source also of Old Saxon, Old Frisian gan, Middle Dutch gaen, Dutch gaan, Old High German gan, German gehen), from PIE root *ghē- "to release, let go; be released" (source also of Sanskrit jihite "goes away," Greek kikhano "I reach, meet with"), but there does not seem to be general agreement on a list of cognates.

A defective verb throughout its recorded history; the Old English past tense was eode, a word of uncertain origin but evidently once a different verb (perhaps connected to Gothic iddja); it was replaced 1400s by went, past tense of wenden "to direct one's way" (see wend). In northern England and Scotland, however, eode tended to be replaced by gaed, a construction based on go. In modern English, only be and go take their past tenses from entirely different verbs.

The word in its various forms and combinations takes up 45 columns of close print in the OED. Meaning "cease to exist" is from c. 1200; that of "to appear" (with reference to dress, appearance, etc.) is from late 14c.; that of "to be sold" is from early 15c. Meaning "to be known" (with by) is from 1590s; that of "pass into another condition or state" is from 1580s. From c. 1600 as "to wager," hence also "to stand treat," and to go (someone) better in wagering (1864). Meaning "say" emerged 1960s in teen slang. Colloquial meaning "urinate or defecate" attested by 1926, euphemistic (compare Old English gong "a privy," literally "a going").

To go back on "prove faithless to" is from 1859; to go under in the figurative sense "to fail" is from 1849. To go places "be successful" is by 1934.

Advertisement
gang (n.)

from Old English gang "a going, journey, way, passage," and Old Norse gangr "a group of men, a set," both from Proto-Germanic *gangaz (source also of Old Saxon, Old Frisian, Danish, Dutch, Old High German, German gang, Old Norse gangr, Gothic gagg "act of going"), of uncertain origin, perhaps from PIE root *ghengh- "to step" (source also of Sanskrit jangha "shank," Avestan zanga- "ankle," Lithuanian žengiu "I stride"). Not considered to be related to go.

The sense evolution is probably via meaning "a set of articles that usually are taken together in going" (mid-14c.), especially a set of tools used on the same job. By 1620s this had been extended in nautical speech to mean "a company of workmen," and by 1630s the word was being used, with disapproving overtones, for "any band of persons traveling together," then "a criminal gang or company" (gang of thieves, gang of roughs, etc.). By 1855 gang was being used in the sense "group of criminal or mischievous boys in a city." In American English, especially of slaves working on plantations (1724). Also formerly used of animal herds or flocks (17c.-19c.). Gangway preserves the original sense of the word, as does gang-plank.

easy-going (adj.)

also easygoing, "good-natured," 1640s, from easy + going.

going-over (n.)

1872 as "scolding;" 1919 as "inspection;" from verbal phrase; see going + over (adv.).

in-going (adj.)

also ingoing, 1825, from in + going. Probably a modern formation unrelated to Middle English in-going (n.) "act of entering" (mid-14c.), from ingo "to go in, enter," from Old English ingan (past tense ineode), equivalent of German eingehen, Dutch ingaan.

ongoing (adj.)

also on-going, "progressing, proceeding, not intermitting," 1877, from on + going.

outgoing (adj.)

1630s, "that goes out," from out (adv.) + going. Meaning "sociable, friendly," is attested from 1950, on same notion as that expressed in extrovert (literally one who is "out-turning"). Middle English had a noun outgoing "a departure," mid-14c., from a verb outgo "to go forth," and Old English had utgangende "outgoing" (literal). Related: Outgoingness.

sea-going (adj.)

"designed or fit for going to sea," 1829; see sea + going.