Saxon

Saxon c.1300, from L.L. Saxonem (nom. Saxo), usually found in pl. Saxones, from P.Gmc. *sakhsan (Cf. O.E. Seaxe, O.H.G. Sahsun, Ger. Sachse "Saxon"), with a possible literal sense of "swordsmen" (Cf. O.E. seax, O.Fris., O.N. sax "knife, short sword, dagger," perhaps ultimately from PIE root of SAW (Cf. saw) (1)). The word figures in the well-known story, related by Geoffrey of Monmouth, who got it from Nennius, of the treacherous slaughter by the Anglo-Saxons of their British hosts:
Accordingly they all met at the time and place appointed, and began to treat of peace; and when a fit opportunity offered for executing his villany, Hengist cried out, "Nemet oure Saxas," and the same instant seized Vortigern, and held him by his cloak. The Saxons, upon the signal given, drew their daggers, and falling upon the princes, who little suspected any such design, assassinated them to the number of four hundred and sixty barons and consuls ....
OED helpfully points out that the correct Old English (with an uninflected plural) would be nimað eowre seax. For other national names that may have derived from characteristic tribal weapons, Cf. FRANK (Cf. Frank), LOMBARD (Cf. Lombard). Still in 20c. used by Celtic speakers to mean "an Englishman." In reference to the modern German state of Saxony (Ger. Sachsen, Fr. Saxe) it is attested from 1630s. Saxon is the source of the -sex in Essex, Sussex, etc. (Cf. Middlesex, from O.E. Middel-Seaxe "Middle Saxons"). Bede distinguished the Anglo-Saxons, who conquered much of southern Britain, from the Eealdesaxe "Old Saxons," who stayed in Germany.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • saxon — saxon, onne [ saksɔ̃, ɔn ] n. et adj. • 1512; Saisne 1080; bas lat. Saxo 1 ♦ (Le plus souvent au plur.) Membre d un des anciens peuples germaniques. Invasion de la Grande Bretagne par les Saxons unis aux Angles et aux Jutes (⇒ anglo saxon) . Adj …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • Saxon — Sax on (s[a^]ks [u^]n or n), n. [L. Saxo, pl. Saxones, from the Saxon national name; cf. AS. pl. Seaxe, Seaxan, fr. seax a knife, a short sword, a dagger (akin to OHG. sahs, and perhaps to L. saxum rock, stone, knives being originally made of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Saxon — puede referirse a: Saxon, comuna suiza del cantón del Valais; Saxon, grupo musical británico; Saxon XSLT, software; John Saxon, actor estadounidense; la traducción inglesa del gentilicio sajón; Saxon, automóvil producido entre 1913 y 1923. Esta… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Saxon — Sax on, a. Of or pertaining to the Saxons, their country, or their language. (b) Anglo Saxon. (c) Of or pertaining to Saxony or its inhabitants. [1913 Webster] {Saxon blue} (Dyeing), a deep blue liquid used in dyeing, and obtained by dissolving… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • saxon — SAXÓN, Ă, saxoni, e, s.m. şi f., adj. 1. s.m. şi f. Persoană care făcea parte din populaţia de bază a vechii Saxonii sau care era originară de acolo; (la m. pl.) uniune de triburi germane care locuia în vechea Saxonie. 2. adj. Care aparţine… …   Dicționar Român

  • Saxon — [sak′sən] n. [ME < LL Saxo, pl. Saxones < WGmc name > OE Seaxan < base akin to OHG sahs, sword, knife & L saxum, rock, stone, secare, to cut (see SAW1): hence, orig. ? knife bearers] 1. a member of an ancient Germanic people of… …   English World dictionary

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