secure (adj.)

1530s, "without care or fear, dreading no evil" (a sense now archaic), from Latin securus, of persons, "free from care, quiet, easy," also in a bad sense, "careless, reckless;" of things, "tranquil; free from danger, safe," from *se cura, from se "free from" (see se-) + cura "care" (see cure (n.)).

In early use it often implied "over-confident, too sure." In English, in reference to places, "free from danger, unexposed," by c. 1600. The mechanical meaning "firmly fixed" (of material things) is by 1841, extended from the mental meaning "affording grounds for confidence" (1580s) hence "of such stability, strength, etc. to preclude risk." Of telephones or telephone lines, "not wiretapped," by 1961.

The earlier word, or form of the word, was Middle English siker, from Old English sicor, an earlier borrowing of the same Latin word, and sure (adj.) is a doublet, altered in its passage through Old French. Related: Securely.

secure (v.)

c. 1600, "to make safe, guard from danger," from secure (adj.). Meaning "ensure, make certain, guarantee" is from 1650s; that of "seize and hold" (in reference to persons) is from 1640s; that of "make fast or firm" (of things) is from 1650s. The sense of "get possession of, make oneself master of" is from 1743. Related: Secured; securing.

updated on April 06, 2022

Definitions of secure from WordNet
secure (v.)
get by special effort;
Synonyms: procure
secure (v.)
cause to be firmly attached;
Synonyms: fasten / fix
secure (v.)
assure payment of;
secure (v.)
make certain of;
Synonyms: guarantee / ensure / insure / assure
secure (v.)
fill or close tightly with or as if with a plug;
Synonyms: plug / stop up
secure (v.)
furnish with battens;
Synonyms: batten / batten down
secure (adj.)
free from fear or doubt; easy in mind;
he was secure that nothing will be held against him
Synonyms: unafraid / untroubled
secure (adj.)
free from danger or risk;
secure from harm
his fortune was secure
made a secure place for himself in his field
secure (adj.)
not likely to fail or give way;
the lock was secure
a secure foundation
a secure hold on her wrist
secure (adj.)
immune to attack; incapable of being tampered with;
a secure telephone connection
Synonyms: impregnable / inviolable / strong / unassailable / unattackable
secure (adj.)
financially safe;
a secure investment
Synonyms: dependable / good / safe
Etymologies are not definitions. From, not affiliated with etymonline.