Entries linking to waxwing
Old English weax "substance made by bees," from Proto-Germanic *wahsam (source also of Old Saxon, Old High German wahs, Old Norse vax, Dutch was, German Wachs), from PIE root *wokso- "wax" (source also of Old Church Slavonic voskŭ, Lithuanian vaškas, Polish wosk, Russian vosk "wax" (but these may be from Germanic).
Used of other similar substances from 18c. Slang for "gramophone record" is from 1932, American English (until the early 1940s, most original records were made by needle-etching onto a waxy disk which was then metal-plated to make a master). Waxworks "exhibition of wax figures representing famous or notorious persons" first recorded 1796.
late 12c., wenge, "forelimb fitted for flight of a bird or bat," also the part of some insects resembling a wing in form or function, from Old Norse vængr "wing of a bird, aisle, etc." (cognate with Danish and Swedish vinge "wing"), of unknown origin, perhaps from a Proto-Germanic *we-ingjaz, suffixed form of PIE root *we- "blow" (source of Old English wawan "to blow." Replaced Old English feðra (plural) "wings" (see feather). The meaning "either of two divisions of a political party, army, etc." is first recorded c. 1400; theatrical sense is from 1790.
The slang sense of earn (one's) wings is 1940s, from the wing-shaped badges awarded to air cadets on graduation. To be under (someone's) wing "protected by (someone)" is recorded from early 13c. Phrase on a wing and a prayer is title of a 1943 song about landing a damaged aircraft.
updated on December 02, 2012