axe

{{11}}axe (n.) O.E. æces (Northumbrian acas) "axe, pickaxe, hatchet," later æx, from P.Gmc. *akusjo (Cf. O.S. accus, O.N. ex, O.Fris. axe, Ger. Axt, Goth. aqizi), from PIE *agw(e)si- (Cf. Gk. axine, L. ascia).
The spelling ax is better on every ground, of etymology, phonology, and analogy, than axe, which became prevalent during the 19th century; but it is now disused in Britain. [OED]
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The spelling ax, though "better on every ground, of etymology, phonology, & analogy" (OED), is so strange to 20th-c. eyes that it suggests pedantry & is unlikely to be restored. [Fowler]
Meaning "musical instrument" is 1955, originally jazz slang for the saxophone; rock slang for "guitar" dates to 1967. The axe in figurative sense of cutting of anything (expenses, workers, etc.), especially as a cost-saving measure, is from 1922, probably from the notion of the headman's literal axe (itself attested from mid-15c.). To have an axe to grind is from an 1815 essay by U.S. editor and politician Charles Miner (1780-1865) in which a man flatters a boy and gets him to do the chore of axe-grinding for him, then leaves without offering thanks or recompense. Misattributed to Benjamin Franklin in Weekley, OED print edition, and many other sources.
{{12}}axe (v.) 1670s, "to shape or cut with an axe," from AXE (Cf. axe) (n.). Meaning "to remove, severely reduce," usually figurative, recorded by 1922. Related: Axed; axing.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • axe — [ aks ] n. m. • 1372; lat. axis « essieu » 1 ♦ Ligne idéale autour de laquelle s effectue une rotation. Astron. Axe du monde (cf. Coordonnées célestes). ♢ Géom. Droite autour de laquelle tourne une figure plane pour engendrer un solide de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Axé — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Para otros usos de este término, véase Axe (desambiguación). Ivete Sangalo en Florianópolis El axé es un movimiento musical muy popular surgido en el estado de Bahía (Brasil), que se in …   Wikipedia Español

  • Axe — bezeichnet: das englischsprachige Wort für Axt und Beil River Axe (Lyme Bay), ein südwärts fließender Fluss in England, der in der Lyme Bay bei Seaton in den Ärmelkanal mündet River Axe (Bristol Channel), ein westwärts fließender Fluss, der bei… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • AXE — bezeichnet: Axe (Fluss), einen Fluss in Südengland Axé, eine brasilianische Musikrichtung Axe (Band), eine Hardrock Band .axe, ein von Microsoft AutoRoute verwendetes Dateiformat Der Markenname Axe bzw. AXE bezeichnet: Axe (Marke), eine… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Axé — (Aussprache: x=sch) ist eine brasilianische Musikrichtung, die ihren Ursprung in Salvador da Bahia im Nordosten Brasiliens hat. Ursprünglich ist Axé eine rituelle, religiöse Begrüßung, die im Candomblé und Umbanda verwendet wird und positive… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Axe — is a locational surname which is of Olde English, pre 10th century origins. It derives from the Ancient British word for a river Isca which predates the Roman Invasion of 55 a.d., through the later aesce to the medieval exe or axe. In effect the… …   Surnames reference

  • axe — AXE. sub. masc. Ligne droite qui passe par le centre d un globe, et sur laquelle le globe tourne. L axe d une sphère. Il se dit aussi De la ligne qu on suppose qui passe par le centre de la terre, et par les deux pôles. L axe du monde. L axe de… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • axe — (US also ax) ► NOUN 1) a heavy bladed tool used for chopping wood. 2) (the axe) severe cost cutting action. ► VERB ▪ cancel or dismiss suddenly and ruthlessly. ● have an axe to grind Cf. ↑ …   English terms dictionary

  • Axe — Axe, Axeman Axe man, etc. See {Ax}, {Axman}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • axe — AXE. s. m. Ligne droite qui passe par le centre d une Sphere, d un globe. L axe du monde. l axe de la terre …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • axe — |ch| s. m. [Infantil] Ferimento, dor ou doença. = DÓI DÓI   ‣ Etimologia: origem onomatopaica axe |ács| s. m. 1. O mesmo que eixo. 2. Linha imaginária que passa pelo centro de um corpo. 3. Segunda vértebra cervical. (Melhor que áxis.) 4. Espécie… …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

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