ready (adj.)

Middle English redi, with adjectival suffix -i (as in busy, crafty, hungry, etc.) + Old English ræde, geræde "prepared, ready, suitably equipped;" of a horse, "ready for riding."

This is reconstructed to be from Proto-Germanic *(ga)raitha- "arranged" (source also of Old Frisian rede "ready," Middle Dutch gereit, Old High German reiti, Middle High German bereite, German bereit, Old Norse greiðr "ready, plain," Gothic garaiþs "ordered, arranged"), which is perhaps from PIE root *reidh- "to ride" (see ride (v.)).

Lengthened in Middle English by change of ending. Sense of "at hand, present, available" is late 12c. Of money, "immediately available," c. 1300, hence slang noun the ready "cash" (1680s). Phrase at the ready "in the position of a soldier's firearm after the command '(make) ready!'" is attested from 1837. As an adverb, c. 1300, "at hand." A ready-reckoner (1757) was a book of tabulated calculations of the sort used in ordinary business and housekeeping.

ready (v.)

early 13c., redien, "to administer" (a sense now obsolete); c. 1300, "to take aim;" mid-14c., "to make (something) ready, prepare, put into proper condition or order," from ready (adj.). "Somewhat rare between the 15th and 19th c." [OED]. Related: Readied; readying. Compare Dutch reeden "prepare, dress; German bereiten, Danish berede "prepare, get ready;" also compare redd (v.).

updated on May 09, 2021

Definitions of ready from WordNet
ready (adj.)
(of especially money) immediately available;
a ready source of cash
he seems to have ample ready money
ready (adj.)
completely prepared or in condition for immediate action or use or progress;
get ready
she is ready to resign
ready for use
I am ready to work
ready to learn to read
the soup will be ready in a minute
ready for action
the bridge is ready to collapse
ready (adj.)
mentally disposed;
he was ready to believe her
ready (adj.)
made suitable and available for immediate use;
dinner is ready
ready (adj.)
apprehending and responding with speed and sensitivity;
a ready wit
Synonyms: quick
ready (v.)
prepare for eating by applying heat;
Synonyms: cook / fix / make / prepare
ready (v.)
make ready or suitable or equip in advance for a particular purpose or for some use, event, etc;
Get the children ready for school!
Synonyms: fix / prepare / set up / gear up / set
ready (n.)
poised for action;
their guns were at the ready
Etymologies are not definitions. From, not affiliated with etymonline.