Words related to nail

doornail (n.)

also door-nail, "large-headed nail used for studding batten doors for strength or ornament," late 14c.; see door (n.) + nail (n.). The figurative expression dead as a doornail is attested as early as the word itself.

But ich haue bote of mi bale bi a schort time, I am ded as dore-nail. ("William of Palerne," c. 1375).

Compare key-cold "lifeless, inanimate, devoid of heat, cold as a metal key" (1510s). Also in Middle English as a symbol of muteness (domb as a dor nail, c. 1400).  

finger-nail (n.)
also fingernail, early 13c., from finger (n.) + nail (n.).
hangnail (n.)
also hang-nail, "sore strip of partially detached flesh at the side of a nail of the finger or toe," probably a 17c. or earlier folk etymology and sense alteration (as if from hang (v.) + (finger) nail) of Middle English agnail, angnail "a corn on the foot," from Old English agnail, angnail. The literal sense probably is "painful spike" (in the flesh). The first element would be Proto-Germanic *ang- "compressed, hard, painful" (from PIE root *angh- "tight, painfully constricted, painful"). The second element is Old English nægl "spike" (see nail (n.)).

Compare Old English angnes "anxiety, trouble, pain, fear;" angset "eruption, pustule." OED also compares Latin clavus, which "was both a nail (of iron, etc.) and a corn on the foot." Similar compounding in Old High German ungnagel, Frisian ongneil.
hobnail (n.)
"short, thick nail with a large head," 1590s, from nail (n.); the first element probably identical with hob "rounded peg or pin used as a mark or target in games" (1580s), which is of unknown origin. See hob. Because they were used to make heavy boots and shoes, the word was used figuratively for "rustic person" 17c. and after. Related: Hobnailed.
nail-biter (n.)

"worrisome or suspenseful experience," by 1999, perhaps originally in reference to close games in sports, from the notion of biting one's fingernails as a sign of anxiety (attested from 1570s); see nail (n.) + bite (v.). Nail-biting (n.) is from 1805; nail-biter as "person who habitually or compulsively bites his fingernails" is by 1856.

nail-clippers (n.)

"hand-tool used to trim the fingernails and toenails," 1890, from nail (n.) + clipper (n.).

nailery (n.)

"workshop where nails are made," 1798, from nail (n.) + -ery or from nailer "one who makes nails" (mid-15c.) + -y (1).

nail-file (n.)

"small, flat, single-cut file for trimming the fingernails," by 1819, from nail (n.) + file (n.2).

nail-polish (n.)

"lacquer applied to the fingernail or toenails to protect and decorate," 1881, from nail (n.) + polish (n.).

onyx (n.)

type of quartz characterized by a structure in parallel bands differing in color or degree of translucency, used for cameos, etc., mid-13c., oneche; c. 1300, onix, from Old French oniche "onyx" (12c.), and directly from Latin onyx (genitive onychis), from Greek onyx "onyx-stone," originally "claw, talon, hoof, fingernail" (see nail (n.)). So called because the mineral's color sometimes resembles that of a human fingernail, pink with white streaks.