Etymology
Advertisement

sport (v.)

c. 1400, "to take pleasure, to amuse oneself," from Old French desporter, deporter "to divert, amuse, please, play; to seek amusement," literally "carry away" (the mind from serious matters), from des- "away" (see dis-) + porter "to carry," from Latin portare "to carry" (from PIE root *per- (2) "to lead, pass over"). Compare disport (v.), which is the older form.

Restricted sense of "amuse oneself by active exercise in open air or taking part in some game" is from late 15c. Meaning "to wear" is from 1778. Related: Sported; sporting.

sport (n.)

early 15c., "pleasant pastime," shortening of disport "activity that offers amusement or relaxation; entertainment, fun" (c. 1300), also "a pastime or game; flirtation; pleasure taken in such activity" (late 14c.), from Anglo-French disport, Old French desport, deport "pleasure, enjoyment, delight; solace, consolation; favor, privilege," related to desporter, deporter "to divert, amuse, please, play" (see sport (v.)), also compare disport (n.).

Original sense preserved in phrases such as in sport "in jest" (mid-15c.). Meaning "game involving physical exercise" first recorded 1520s. Sense of "stylish man" is from 1861, American English, probably because they lived by gambling and betting on races. Meaning "good fellow" is attested from 1881 (as in be a sport, 1913). Sport as a familiar form of address to a man is from 1935, Australian English. The sport of kings was originally (1660s) war-making. Other, lost senses of Middle English disport were "consolation, solace; a source of comfort."

updated on August 31, 2018

Advertisement
Advertisement
Definitions of sport from WordNet
1
sport (n.)
an active diversion requiring physical exertion and competition;
Synonyms: athletics
sport (n.)
the occupation of athletes who compete for pay;
sport (n.)
(Maine colloquial) a temporary summer resident of Maine;
Synonyms: summercater
sport (n.)
a person known for the way she (or he) behaves when teased or defeated or subjected to trying circumstances;
a good sport
a poor sport
sport (n.)
someone who engages in sports;
Synonyms: sportsman / sportswoman
sport (n.)
(biology) an organism that has characteristics resulting from chromosomal alteration;
Synonyms: mutant / mutation / variation
sport (n.)
verbal wit or mockery (often at another's expense but not to be taken seriously);
he said it in sport
Synonyms: fun / play
2
sport (v.)
wear or display in an ostentatious or proud manner;
she was sporting a new hat
Synonyms: feature / boast
sport (v.)
play boisterously;
Synonyms: frolic / lark / rollick / skylark / disport / cavort / gambol / frisk / romp / run around / lark about
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.