Antidote 10 User Guide

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User Guide / The Dictionaries / Historical Dictionary

Historical Dictionary

The historical dictionary gives the detailed etymology of 75,000 words, accompanied by explanatory comments in many cases. It also gives the etymologically related words of 60,000 words.


Antidote gives all the details on the origin of the headword: how it was created, its language of origin and its spelling and meaning in that language. If you would like to learn more about the language of origin, just click on the orange link to see the corresponding article in the historical guide. Words whose unusual evolution merits more explanation are accompanied by a detailed note.

Etymologically related words

Words that share the same origin are listed in this section, with an indication of their common etymon (the word or morpheme from which a later word is derived) and the source language. They are grouped into separate subsections when their more recent etymons are different. An arrow shows the words derived from an English word in the list, while a bullet (•) indicates a word derived directly from the same etymon as the first word in the subsection.

In the Etymologically related words section, clicking on an etymon displays its meaning; clicking on a language, in small grey characters, takes you to the corresponding article in the historical guide; lastly, clicking on a word that is one of the “etymological siblings”, i.e. the words derived from the same etymon, displays the definition of the word in a popover window.

In some cases a word may have more than one etymology. Pike, for instance, is derived from popular Latin and Old English words. In these cases, the historical dictionary numbers the different etymologies (1., 2., 3., etc.) and may show more than one family of etymologically related words.