kill (v.)

c. 1200, "to strike, hit, beat, knock;" c. 1300, "to deprive of life, put to death;" perhaps from an unrecorded variant of Old English cwellan "to kill, murder, execute," from Proto-Germanic *kwaljanan (source also of Old English cwelan "to die," cwalu "violent death;" Old Saxon quellian "to torture, kill;" Old Norse kvelja "to torment;" Middle Dutch quelen "to vex, tease, torment;" Old High German quellan "to suffer pain," German quälen "to torment, torture"), from PIE root *gwele- "to throw, reach," with extended sense "to pierce." Related: Killed; killing.

The meaning "to nullify or neutralize the qualities of" is attested from 1610s. Of time, from 1728; of engines, from 1886; of lights, from 1934. Kill-devil, colloquial for "rum," especially if new or of bad quality, is from 1630s. Dressed to kill is first attested 1818 in a letter of Keats (compare killing (adj.) in the sense "overpowering, fascinating, attractive").

kill (n.1)

early 13c., "a stroke, a blow," from kill (v.). Meaning "the act of killing" is from 1814 in hunting slang; that of "a killed animal" is from 1878. Lawn tennis serve sense is from 1903. The kill "the knockout" is boxing jargon, 1950. Kill ratio is from 1968, American English.

kill (n.2)

"stream, creek," 1630s, American English, from Dutch kil "a channel," from Middle Dutch kille "riverbed, inlet." The word is preserved in place names in the Mid-Atlantic American states (such as Schuylkill, Catskill, Fresh Kills, etc.). A common Germanic word, the Old Norse form, kill, meant "bay, gulf" and gave its name to Kiel Fjord on the Baltic coast and thence to Kiel, the German port city founded there in 1240.

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Definitions of kill
kill (v.)
cause to die; put to death, usually intentionally or knowingly;
The farmer killed a pig for the holidays
This man killed several people when he tried to rob a bank
kill (v.)
thwart the passage of;
kill a motion
Synonyms: shoot down / defeat / vote down / vote out
kill (v.)
end or extinguish by forceful means;
Synonyms: stamp out
kill (v.)
be fatal;
drunken driving kills
cigarettes kill
kill (v.)
be the source of great pain for;
These new shoes are killing me!
kill (v.)
overwhelm with hilarity, pleasure, or admiration;
The comedian was so funny, he was killing me!
kill (v.)
hit with so much force as to make a return impossible, in racket games;
She killed the ball
kill (v.)
hit with great force;
He killed the ball
kill (v.)
deprive of life;
AIDS has killed thousands in Africa
kill (v.)
cause the death of, without intention;
She was killed in the collision of three cars
kill (v.)
drink down entirely;
She killed a bottle of brandy that night
Synonyms: toss off / pop / bolt down / belt down / pour down / down / drink down
kill (v.)
mark for deletion, rub off, or erase;
kill these lines in the President's speech
Synonyms: obliterate / wipe out
kill (v.)
tire out completely;
The daily stress of her work is killing her
kill (v.)
cause to cease operating;
kill the engine
kill (v.)
destroy a vitally essential quality of or in;
Eating artichokes kills the taste of all other foods
kill (n.)
the act of terminating a life;
Synonyms: killing / putting to death
kill (n.)
the destruction of an enemy plane or ship or tank or missile;
the pilot reported two kills during the mission
kill (n.)
the body of an animal, or bodies of animals, killed by a person or another animal;