calling (n.) Look up calling at
"vocation," mid-13c., verbal noun from call (v.). The sense traces to I Cor. vii:20.
calliope (n.) Look up calliope at
1858, "steam-whistle keyboard organ," named for Calliope, ninth and chief muse, presiding over eloquence and epic poetry, Latinized from Greek Kalliope, literally "beautiful-voiced," from kalli-, combining form of kallos "beauty" (see Callisto) + opos (genitive of *ops) "voice," related to Latin vox (see voice (n.)).
calliper (n.) Look up calliper at
variant of caliper. Related: Callipers.
callipygian (adj.) Look up callipygian at
"of, pertaining to, or having beautiful buttocks," 1800, Latinized from Greek kallipygos, name of a statue of Aphrodite at Syracuse, from kalli-, combining form of kallos "beauty" (see Callisto) + pyge "rump, buttocks." Sir Thomas Browne (1646) refers to "Callipygæ and women largely composed behinde."
Callisto Look up Callisto at
fourth moon of Jupiter; in classical mythology a nymph, mother of Arcas by Zeus, turned to a bear by Hera, from Greek kallistos, superlative of kalos "beautiful, beauteous," from PIE *kal-wo-, suffixed form of root *kal- (2) "beautiful." Feminized as proper name Callista.
callithumpian (adj.) Look up callithumpian at
1836, U.S. colloquial, probably a fanciful construction. The "English Dialect Dictionary" reports Gallithumpians as a Dorset and Devon word from 1790s for a society of radical social reformers, and also in reference to "noisy disturbers of elections and meetings" (1770s). The U.S. reference is most commonly "a band of discordant instruments" or bangers on pots and pans, especially to "serenade" a newlywed couple to show disapproval of one or the other or the match.
callosal (adj.) Look up callosal at
"pertaining to the corpus callosum," from Latin callosus (see callous) + -al (1).
callous (adj.) Look up callous at
c. 1400, "hardened," in the physical sense, from Latin callosus "thick-skinned," from callus, callum "hard skin" (see callus). The figurative sense of "unfeeling" appeared in English by 1670s. Related: Callously; callousness.
callow (adj.) Look up callow at
Old English calu "bare, bald," from Proto-Germanic *kalwa- (source also of Middle Dutch calu, Dutch kaal, Old High German kalo, German Kahl), from PIE root *gal- (1) "bald, naked" (source also of Russian golyi "smooth, bald"). From young birds with no feathers, meaning extended to any young inexperienced thing or creature (1570s). Apparently not related to Latin calvus "bald."
callus (n.) Look up callus at
"hardened skin," 1560s, from Latin callus, variant of callum "hard skin," related to callere "be hard," from PIE root *kal- (3) "hard" (source also of Sanskrit kalika "bud," Old Irish calath "hard," Old Church Slavonic kaliti "to cool, harden").
calm (adj.) Look up calm at
late 14c., from Old French calme "tranquility, quiet," traditionally from Old Italian calma, from Late Latin cauma "heat of the mid-day sun" (in Italy, a time when everything rests and is still), from Greek kauma "heat" (especially of the sun), from kaiein "to burn" (see caustic). Spelling influenced by Latin calere "to be hot." Figurative application to social or mental conditions is 16c.
calm (n.) Look up calm at
late 14c., from Old French calme, carme "stillness, quiet, tranquility," from the adjective (see calm (adj.)).
calm (v.) Look up calm at
late 14c., from Old French calmer or from calm (adj.). Related: Calmed; calming.
calmative (adj.) Look up calmative at
by 1831, from French calmatif; see calm (adj.) + -ative. A hybrid word; purists prefer sedative. "The Latinic suffix is here defensible on the ground of It. and Sp. calmar, F. calmer ...." [OED].
calmly (adv.) Look up calmly at
1590s, from calm (adj.) + -ly (2).
calmness (n.) Look up calmness at
1510s, from calm (adj.) + -ness.
calomel (n.) Look up calomel at
old name for mercurous chloride, 1670s, from French calomel, supposedly (Littré) from Greek kalos "beautiful" (see Callisto) + melas "black;" but as the powder is yellowish-white this seems difficult. "It is perhaps of significance that the salt is blackened by ammonia and alkalis" [Flood].
Calor (n.) Look up Calor at
proprietary name for a type of liquid gas sold in Britain, 1936, from Latin calor, literally "heat" (see calorie).
caloric (n.) Look up caloric at
hypothetical fluid in a now-discarded model of heat exchange, 1792, from French calorique, coined in this sense by Lavoisier, from Latin calorem "heat" (nominative calor; see calorie). The adjective is recorded from 1865.
calorie (n.) Look up calorie at
1866, from French calorie, from Latin calor (genitive caloris) "heat," from PIE *kle-os-, suffixed form of root *kele- (1) "warm" (source also of Latin calidus "warm," calere "be hot;" Sanskrit carad- "harvest," literally "hot time;" Lithuanian silti "become warm," silus "August;" Old Norse hlær, Old English hleow "warm").

In scientific use, largely replaced 1950 by the joule. As a unit of energy, defined as "heat required to raise 1 gram of water 1 degree Celsius" (the small or gram calorie), but also as "heat required to raise 1 kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius" (the large calorie or kilocalorie).
calorimeter (n.) Look up calorimeter at
1794, from calorie + -meter. A hybrid word.
calque (n.) Look up calque at
"loan translation of a foreign word or phrase," from French calque, literally "a copy," from calquer "to trace by rubbing" (itself borrowed in English 1660s as calk), introduced 16c. from Italian calcare, from Latin calcare "to tread, to press down."
calumet (n.) Look up calumet at
1660s, from Canadian French calumet, from Norman French calumet "pipe" (Old French chalemel, 12c., Modern French chalumeau), from Latin calamellus, diminutive of calamus "reed; something made of reed or shaped like a reed" (see shawm).
calumniate (v.) Look up calumniate at
1550s, from Latin calumniatus, past participle of calumniari "to accuse falsely," from calumnia "slander, false accusation" (see calumny). Related: Calumniated; calumniating.
calumniation (n.) Look up calumniation at
1540s, noun of action from calumniate (v.).
calumniator (n.) Look up calumniator at
1690s, from Latin calumniator, agent noun from calumniari (see calumniate (v.)).
calumnious (adj.) Look up calumnious at
late 15c., from Latin calumniosus, from calumnia (see calumny). Related: Calumniously.
calumny (n.) Look up calumny at
"False & malicious misrepresentation of the words or actions of others, calculated to injure their reputation" [Fowler], mid-15c., from Middle French calomnie (15c.), from Latin calumnia "trickery, subterfuge, misrepresentation, malicious charge," from calvi "to trick, deceive," from PIE root *kel- (6) "to deceive, confuse" (source also of Greek kelein "to bewitch, seduce, beguile," Gothic holon "to deceive," Old Norse hol "praise, flattery," Old English hol "slander," holian "to slander").
Calvary Look up Calvary at
name of the mount of the Crucifixion, late 14c., from Latin Calvaria (Greek Kraniou topos), translating Aramaic gulgulta "place of the skull" (see Golgotha). Rendered literally in Old English as Heafodpannan stow. Latin Calvaria is related to calvus "bald" (see Calvin).
calve (v.) Look up calve at
Old English cealfian, from cealf "calf" (see calf (n.1)). Of icebergs, 1837. Related: Calved; calving.
Calvin Look up Calvin at
John Calvin (1509-1564), Protestant leader, born Jean Caulvin, the surname related to French Chauvin (compare chauvinism), from Latin calvus "bald," from PIE *kle-wo- "bald."
Calvinism (n.) Look up Calvinism at
1560s, from John Calvin (1509-1564), Protestant reformer, + -ism. Alternative form Calvinian was in use in 1566. Generalized association with stern moral codes and predestination is attested since at least 1853. Related: Calvinist.
Calypso Look up Calypso at
sea nymph in the "Odyssey," literally "hidden, hider" (perhaps originally a death goddess) from Greek kalyptein "to cover, conceal," from PIE *kel- "to cover, conceal, save," root of English Hell (see cell). The type of West Indian song is so called from 1934, but the origin of the name is obscure.
calyx (n.) Look up calyx at
1680s, from Latin calyx, from Greek kalyx "seed pod, husk, outer covering" (of a fruit, flower bud, etc.), from root of kalyptein "to cover, conceal" (see cell). The proper plural is calyces. Some sources connect the word rather with Greek kylix "drinking cup."
cam (n.1) Look up cam at
"a projecting part of a rotating machinery," 1777, from Dutch cam "cog of a wheel," originally "comb;" cognate of English comb (n.). This might have combined with English camber "having a slight arch;" or the whole thing could be from camber.
cam (n.2) Look up cam at
abbreviation of camera, by 1990.
camaraderie (n.) Look up camaraderie at
1840, from French camaraderie, from camarade "comrade" (see comrade).
camber (n.) Look up camber at
1610s, nautical term, from Old French cambre, chambre "bent," from Latin camurum (nominative camur) "crooked, arched;" related to camera.
cambium (n.) Look up cambium at
1670s in botany sense, from Late Latin cambium "exchange," from Latin cambiare "change" (see change (v.)).
Cambodia Look up Cambodia at
from Kambu, legendary ancestor of the people. Related: Cambodian.
Cambrian (adj.) Look up Cambrian at
1650s, "from or of Wales or the Welsh," from Cambria, variant of Cumbria, Latinized derivation of Cymry, the name of the Welsh for themselves, from Old Celtic Combroges "compatriots." Geological sense (of rocks first studied in Wales and Cumberland) is from 1836.
cambric (n.) Look up cambric at
late 14c., from Kamerijk, Flemish form of Cambrai, city in northern France where the cloth was originally made, from Latin Camaracum. The modern form of the English word has elements from both versions of the name.
Cambridge Look up Cambridge at
Old English Grontabricc (c.745) "Bridge on the River Granta" (a Celtic river name, of obscure origin). The change to Cante- and later Cam- was due to Norman influence. The river name Cam is a back-formation in this case, but Cam also was a legitimate Celtic river name, meaning "crooked."
camcorder (n.) Look up camcorder at
1982, from camera and recorder.
came Look up came at
past tense of come.
camel (n.) Look up camel at
Old English camel, perhaps via Old North French camel (Old French chamel, Modern French chameau), from Latin camelus, from Greek kamelos, from Hebrew or Phoenician gamal, perhaps related to Arabic jamala "to bear."

Another Old English word for the beast was olfend, apparently based on confusion of camels with elephants in a place and time when both were known only from travelers' vague descriptions. The Arabian have one hump (the lighter variety is the dromedary); the Bactrian have two.
cameleon (n.) Look up cameleon at
obsolete form of chameleon.
camellia (n.) Look up camellia at
1753, named by Linnæus from Latinized form of Georg Joseph Kamel (1661-1706), Moravian-born Jesuit who described the flora of the island of Luzon, + abstract noun ending -ia.
Camelot (n.) Look up Camelot at
a name first found in medieval French romances; it corresponds to Latin Camuladonum, the Roman forerunner of Colchester, which was an impressive ruin in the Middle Ages. But Malory identifies it with Winchester and Elizabethans tended to see it as Cadbury Castle, an Iron Age hill fort near Glastonbury.
Camembert (n.) Look up Camembert at
type of soft, rich cheese, 1878, from name of village near Argentan, Normandy, where it originally was made. The place name is Medieval Latin Campus Maimberti "field of Maimbert" (a West Germanic personal name).