Etymology
Advertisement

Words related to govern

cybernetics (n.)

"theory or study of communication and control," coined 1948 by U.S. mathematician Norbert Wiener (1894-1964), with -ics + Latinized form of Greek kybernetes "steersman" (metaphorically "guide, governor"), from kybernan "to steer or pilot a ship, direct as a pilot," figuratively "to guide, govern," which is of uncertain origin. Beekes agrees that "the word has no cognates" and concludes "Foreign origin is probable." The construction is perhaps based on 1830s French cybernétique "the art of governing."

The future offers very little hope for those who expect that our new mechanical slaves will offer us a world in which we may rest from thinking. Help us they may, but at the cost of supreme demands upon our honesty and our intelligence. [Norbert Wiener, "God and Golem, Inc.," 1964]
Advertisement
governance (n.)
late 14c., "act or manner of governing," from Old French governance "government, rule, administration; (rule of) conduct" (Modern French gouvernance), from governer "to govern, rule, command" (see govern). Fowler writes that the word "has now the dignity of incipient archaism," but it might continue useful in its original sense as government comes to mean primarily "the governing power in a state."
government (n.)

late 14c., "act of governing or ruling;" 1550s, "system by which a thing is governed" (especially a state), from Old French governement "control, direction, administration" (Modern French gouvernement), from governer "to steer, be at the helm of; govern, rule, command, direct," from Latin gubernare "to direct, rule, guide, govern," originally "to steer, to pilot"(see govern). Meaning "governing power" in a given place is from 1702. Compare governance.

governor (n.)
c. 1300, gouernour, "personal keeper, protector, guide;" late 14c., "one who governs, a ruler," from Old French governeor "prince, ruler, administrator; helmsman" (11c., Modern French gouverneur) and directly from Latin gubernatorem (nominative gubernator) "director, ruler, governor," originally "steersman, pilot" (see govern). Meaning "subordinate ruler; head of a province, etc." is from late 14c. Meaning "one charged with direction or control of an institution, etc." is from late 14c. Mechanical sense of "self-acting regulator" is from 1819. The adjective gubernatorial remembers the Latin form. There is a record of English governator from 1520s.
gubernatorial (adj.)

1734, formed in American English from Latin gubernator "a governor" (see govern) + -al (1). OED marks it "Chiefly U.S.," and Century Dictionary says "Chiefly in newspaper use." As English words, gubernator was in use from 1520s, gubernation from mid-15c., but both are rare.

misgovern (v.)

"to govern ill, administer unfaithfully," c. 1400, misgovernen, from mis- (1) "badly, wrongly" + govern. Related: Misgoverned; misgoverning.

ungoverned (adj.)
from un- (1) "not" + past participle of govern (v.).