Entries linking to hereby
Old English her "in this place, where one puts himself; at this time, toward this place," from Proto-Germanic pronominal stem *hi- (from PIE *ki- "this;" see he) + adverbial suffix -r. Cognate with Old Saxon her, Old Norse, Gothic her, Swedish här, Middle Dutch, Dutch hier, Old High German hiar, German hier.
As the answer to a call, in Old English. Right here "on the spot" is from c. 1200. Here and there "in various places" is from c. 1300. Phrase here today and gone tomorrow first recorded 1680s in writings of Aphra Behn. Here's to _____ as a toast is from 1590s, probably short for here's health to _____. Emphatic this here (adv.) is attested from mid-15c.; colloquially, this here as an adjective is attested from 1762. To be neither here nor there "of no consequence" is attested from 1580s. Here we go again as a sort of verbal rolling of the eyes is attested from 1950.
As a noun, "this place, the present" from c. 1600. Noun phrase here-and-now "this present life" is from 1829.
Old English be- (unstressed) or bi (stressed) "near, in, by, during, about," from Proto-Germanic *bi "around, about," in compounds often merely intensive (source also of Old Saxon and Old Frisian bi "by, near," Middle Dutch bie, Dutch bij, German bei "by, at, near," Gothic bi "about"), from PIE *bhi, reduced form of root *ambhi- "around."
As an adverb by c. 1300, "near, close at hand." OED (2nd ed. print) has 38 distinct definitions of it as a preposition. Originally an adverbial particle of place, which sense survives in place names (Whitby, Grimsby, etc., also compare rudesby). Elliptical use for "secondary course" was in Old English (opposed to main, as in byway, also compare by-blow "illegitimate child," 1590s, Middle English loteby "a concubine," from obsolete lote "to lurk, lie hidden"). This also is the sense of the second by in the phrase by the by (1610s). By the way literally means "along the way" (c. 1200), hence "in passing by," used figuratively to introduce a tangential observation ("incidentally") by 1540s.
To swear by something or someone is in Old English, perhaps originally "in the presence of." Phrase by and by (early 14c.) originally meant "one by one," with by apparently denoting succession; modern sense of "before long" is from 1520s. By and large "in all its length and breadth" (1660s) originally was nautical, "sailing to the wind and off it," hence "in one direction then another;" from nautical expression large wind, one that crosses the ship's line in a favorable direction.
updated on July 04, 2015
I hereby declare you man and wife