c. 1200, reisen, "cause a rising of; lift upright, set upright; build, construct, bring into being," from a Scandinavian source, such as Old Norse reisa "to raise," from Proto-Germanic *raizjan (source also of Gothic ur-raisjan, Old English ræran "to rear;" see rear (v.)), causative of root *ris- "to rise" (see rise (v.)). At first sharing many senses with native rear (v.1).
Meaning "make higher" is from c. 1300 in the physical sense, as is that of "restore to life." Of the voice, from late 14c. Of sieges, blockades, etc., "remove by or as if by lifting," from late 14c. From early 14c. as "take up by aggregation or collection." The sense of "establish contact with (someone)," originally by radio, is by 1929. Meaning "to elevate" (the consciousness) is from 1970. Related: Raised; raising.
Meaning "increase the amount of" is from c. 1500; from 1530s of prices, etc. Meaning "to bring up" (a question, etc.) is from 1640s. Card-playing sense is from 1821. In reference to plants, etc., "promote with care the growth or development of," from 1660s; sense of "foster, rear, bring up" (of children) is by 1744.
Pickering ["A Vocabulary, or Collection of Words and Phrases Which Have Been Supposed to be Peculiar to the United States of America," 1816] has a long passage on the use of raise and grow in reference to crops. He writes that in the U.S. raise is used of persons, in the sense "brought up," but it is "never thus used in the Northern States." Bartlett  adds that it "is applied in the Southern States to the breeding of negroes. It is sometimes heard at the North among the illiterate; as 'I was raised in Connecticut,' meaning brought up there."
"act of raising or lifting," 1530s, from raise (v.). The specific meaning "an increase in amount or value" is from 1728. Meaning "increase in salary or wages" is from 1898, chiefly American English (British preferring rise). Earliest attested use (c. 1500) is in obsolete sense of "a levy."
updated on April 07, 2021