Words related to ob-


before vowels reduced to ep-, before aspirated vowels eph-, word-forming element meaning "on, upon, above," also "in addition to; toward, among," from Greek epi "upon, at, close upon (in space or time), on the occasion of, in addition," also "after," from PIE *epi, *opi "near, at, against" (source also of Sanskrit api "also, besides;" Avestan aipi "also, to, toward;" Armenian ev "also, and;" Latin ob "toward, against, in the way of;" Oscan op, Greek opi- "behind;" Hittite appizzis "younger;" Lithuanian ap- "about, near;" Old Church Slavonic ob "on"). A productive prefix in Greek; also used in modern scientific compounds (such as epicenter).

disoblige (v.)

c. 1600, "to free from obligation;" 1630s, "to refuse or neglect to oblige," from French désobliger (c. 1300), from des- (see dis-) + obliger, from Latin obligare "to bind, bind up, bandage," figuratively "put under obligation," from ob "to" (see ob-) + ligare "to bind," from PIE root *leig- "to tie, bind."

Colloquial sense of "put to inconvenience" is from 1650s (implied in disobligingness). Related: Disobliged; disobliging; disobligingly.

obambulation (n.)

"a walking about," c. 1600, from Latin obambulationem (nominative obambulatio) "a going or walking about," noun of action from past-participle stem of obambulare "to go or walk about, walk past, walk near," from ob "about" (see ob-) + ambulare "to walk, go about" (see amble (v.)).

obdurate (adj.)

mid-15c., "stubborn, inexorable, unyielding; hardened," especially against moral influences; "stubbornly wicked," from Latin obduratus "hardened," past participle of obdurare "harden, render hard; be hard or hardened; hold out, persist, endure," in Church Latin "to harden the heart against God," from ob "against" (see ob-) + durare "harden, render hard," from durus "hard," from PIE *dru-ro-, suffixed variant form of root *deru- "be firm, solid, steadfast." Variant opturate is from early 15c. in medicine in a literal sense of "stopped, obstructed."  Related: Obdurately; obdurateness.

obese (adj.)

"exceedingly fat," 1650s, back-formation from obesity and in part from Latin obesus "fat, stout, plump," literally "that has eaten itself fat," past participle of obedere "to eat all over, devour," from ob "about; because of" (see ob-) + edere "eat" (from PIE root *ed- "to eat"). According to OED, "Rare before 19th c." Related: Obeseness. Latin obesus was translated in Old English as oferfæt "overfat." As Latin obesus also could be read as "eaten up," it also was used in a passive sense, "wasted away, lean."

obesity (n.)

"condition or quality of being corpulent," 1610s, from French obésité and directly from Latin obesitas "fatness, corpulence," from obesus "that has eaten itself fat," past participle of obedere "to eat all over, devour," from ob "about; because of" (see ob-) + edere "eat" (from PIE root *ed- "to eat").

obey (v.)

c. 1300, obeien, "carry out the commands of (someone); submit to (a command, rule, etc.); be ruled by," from Old French obeir "obey, be obedient, do one's duty" (12c.), from Latin obedire, oboedire "obey, be subject, serve; pay attention to, give ear," literally "listen to," from ob "to" (see ob-) + audire "listen, hear" (from PIE root *au- "to perceive"). Same sense development is in hiersumnian, the Old English word for the same thing. Related: Obeyed; obeying.

obfuscate (v.)

"to darken, obscure, confuse, bewilder," 1530s, from Latin obfuscatus, past participle of obfuscare "to darken" (usually in a figurative sense), from ob "in front of, before" (see ob-) + fuscare "to make dark," from fuscus "dark" (see dusk). Related: Obfuscated; obfuscating.

obiter dictum 

"statement in passing," a judge's expression of opinion not regarded as binding or decisive, Latin, literally "something said incidentally;" from obiter "by the way" + dictum in the legal sense "a judge's expression of opinion which is not the formal resolution of a case or determination of the court."

Obiter dicta, legal dicta ... uttered by the way (obiter), not upon the point or question pending, as if turning aside for the time from the main topic of the case to collateral subjects. [Century Dictionary]

Latin obiter is from ob "in front of, toward" (see ob-) + iter "journey" (from PIE root *ei- "to go"). Klein's sources, however, say it is ob with the suffix -iter on analogy of circiter "about" from circa. Also see obituary

obituary (n.)
Origin and meaning of obituary

1706, "register of deaths, a list of the dead," from Medieval Latin obituarius "a record of the death of a person," literally "pertaining to death," from Latin obitus "departure, a going to meet, encounter" (a euphemism for "death"), from stem of obire "go toward, go to meet" (as in mortem obire "meet death"), from ob "toward" (see ob-) + ire "to go" (from PIE root *ei- "to go").

Meaning "a record or announcement of a death," especially in a newspaper, and including a brief biographical sketch, is from 1738. As an adjective, "relating to or recording a death," from 1828. A similar euphemism is in Old English cognate forðfaran "to die," literally "to go forth;" utsið "death," literally "going out, departure."