yard


yard
Yard ‘enclosed area’ [OE] and yard ‘three feet’ [OE] are distinct words, both of ancient ancestry. The former probably goes back ultimately to Indo-European *ghorto-, which also produced Latin cohors ‘court’ (source of English cohort and court) and hortus ‘garden’ (source of English horticulture) and Russian gorod ‘town’ (as in Leningrad). Its prehistoric Germanic descendant was *gard-, which, as well as providing English with yard, has produced garden, garth [14] (via Old Norse), and the second syllable of orchard. Yard ‘three feet’ originally meant ‘stick, rod’ (a sense preserved nautically, as in yardarm [16]). It goes back ultimately to prehistoric Germanic *gazdaz ‘pointed stick’ (source of the gad of gadfly [16], etymologically the fly with the ‘sting’). From this was derived West Germanic *gazdjō, which evolved into German gerte ‘sapling, riding cane’, Dutch gard ‘twig, rod’, and English yard. The Anglo-Saxons used the term as a unit of measurement of land, equal to about five metres (what later became known as a rod, pole, or perch), but its modern use for ‘three feet’ did not emerge until the 14th century. => COHORT, COURT, GARDEN, GARTH, HORTICULTURE, ORCHARD; GADFLY

The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins. 2013.

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  • yard — yard …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • yard — [ jard ] n. m. • 1669; mot angl. ♦ Mesure de longueur anglo saxonne (0,914 m). ⇒ verge. ● yard nom masculin (anglais yard) Unité principale de longueur (symbole yd) du système de mesures coutumier dans les pays anglo saxons, valant 0,914 m. yard… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Yard — Yard, n. [OE. yard, yerd, AS. geard; akin to OFries. garda garden, OS. gardo garden, gard yard, D. gaard garden, G. garten, OHG. garto garden, gari inclosure, Icel. gar[eth]r yard, house, Sw. g[*a]rd, Dan. gaard, Goth. gards a house, garda… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Yard — 〈n.; s, s od. ; Abk.: yd.〉 engl. u. nordamerikanisches Längenmaß, 0,91 m [engl., „Gerte, Messrute“; verwandt mit Gerte] * * * Yard [engl.: jɑ:d ], das; s, s <aber: 4 Yard[s]> [engl. yard, eigtl. = Maßstab; Rute]: Längeneinheit in… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • yard — yard1 [yärd] n. [ME yerde < OE gierd, rod, staff, yard measure, akin to obs. Ger gerte, rod < IE * g̑hazdho , var. of base * ghasto , rod, pole > L hasta, pole, spear] 1. a) a unit of length in the FPS system, equal to 3 feet or 36… …   English World dictionary

  • Yard — Yard, n. [OE. yerd, AS. gierd, gyrd, a rod, stick, a measure, a yard; akin to OFries. ierde, OS. gerda, D. garde, G. gerte, OHG. gartia, gerta, gart, Icel. gaddr a goad, sting, Goth. gazds, and probably to L. hasta a spear. Cf. {Gad}, n., {Gird} …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • yard — W2S2 [ja:d US ja:rd] n ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(measure)¦ 2¦(enclosed area)¦ 3¦(garden)¦ 4¦(back of house)¦ ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ [Sense: 1; Origin: Old English geard, gierd stick ] [Sense: 2 4; Origin: Old E …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • yard — Ⅰ. yard [1] ► NOUN 1) a unit of linear measure equal to 3 feet (0.9144 metre). 2) a square or cubic yard, especially of sand or other building materials. 3) a cylindrical spar slung across a ship s mast for a sail to hang from. ● by the yard Cf.… …   English terms dictionary

  • Yard — Yard, v. t. To confine (cattle) to the yard; to shut up, or keep, in a yard; as, to yard cows. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • yard — [ jard ] noun count *** 1. ) AMERICAN an area around a house that is used for sitting, playing, and growing plants in. British garden a ) an enclosed area around a large building where people can do activities outside: a school/prison yard b ) a… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English


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