Advertisement

naught (n.)

mid-14c., "evil, an evil act," also " a trifle," c. 1400, "nothingness;" early 15c., in arithmetic, "the number zero;" from noht, naht (pron.) "nothing" (late 12c.), from Old English nawiht "nothing," literally "no whit," from na "no" (from PIE root *ne- "not") + wiht "thing, creature, being" (see wight). Also see nought.

Cognate with Old Saxon neowiht "nothing," Old High German niwiht, Gothic ni waihts, Dutch niet, German nicht. It also developed an adjectival sense in Old English, "good for nothing," which by mid-16c. had focused to "morally bad, wicked," though the modern adjective is naughty.

Others are reading

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of naught from WordNet

naught (n.)
a quantity of no importance;
it was all for naught
Synonyms: nothing / nil / nix / nada / null / aught / cipher / cypher / goose egg / zero / zilch / zip / zippo
naught (n.)
complete failure;
all my efforts led to naught
From wordnet.princeton.edu