tablet: Flat slab of stone, clay, or wood, used for an inscription. Old French “tablete” < Latin “tabula”=list or table.
taciturn: Speaking very little, staying quiet. From Latin “tacitus”-silent < “tacere”=to be silent.
taco: Mexican dish made from folded tortilla with a range of contents. Mexican Spanish “taco”=plug or wad.
tactile: Of, or pertaining to, the sense of touch. Latin “tactilis”=tangible < “tact-“=participial stem of “tangere”=to touch.
tadpole: Tailed larval form of an amphibian with gills and no legs. Middle English “tadde”=toad + “poll”=top of the head; round head.
tail: Part that sticks out at the back of an animal’s body and can move. Old English “taegel”=horse tail; hairy.
tailor: One who makes clothes. Anglo-Norman “taillour”=cutter < Latin “taliare”=to cut.
tale: A fictitious or true narrative or story. Old English “talu”=speech, story < Germanic “taljan”=to relate or reckon.
talent: Natural ability or gift. In this sense from Gospel of Matthew – parable of the talents. From Greek “talanton”=balance, weight.
talisman: Object thought to bring good luck. Arabic “tilsam” < Greek “telesma”=sacred object < “telein”=to complete,consecrate < “telos”=end
tall: Something of considerable height. Originally active and ready, from Old English “getale”=swift or prompt.
tall: Something of considerable height. Originally meant “active and ready,” from Old English “getale”=swift or prompt.
talon: Sharp nail on a bird’s foot for tearing. From Old French “talon”=heel of foot < Latin “talus”=ankle.
tangent: In geometry, a line that touches a curve; an idea that spins off from a current topic . Latin “tangentem” < “tangere”=to touch.
tangible: That which is touchable; affecting the senses. Latin “tangibilis”=that may be touched < “tangere”=to touch.
tango: Latin dance of step-step-step-step-close, then long pause and stylized body pose. Perhaps from African “tamgu”=to dance.
tanked: Drunk; being full of alcohol. Gujurati “tankh”=underground reservoir < Sanskrit “tadaga”-pond.
tantamount : Being essentially equal to something. Anglo-Norman “tant amunter”=amount to as much as @wordtoday
tardy: Being or doing something late. From Old French “tardif” < Latin “tardus”=slow or sluggish.
target: Something aimed at, such as a goal. From Old English/French “targe”= small, light shield. Note that Arabic “al-darqah”=wood shield
tarriance: Temporary residence in a place. Obscure origin, poss. Old English “tergan”=to irritate, vex + Latin “ance”=turn verb to noun.
tarry: Stay longer than intended; delay leaving a place.Middle Engish “tary”=to delay < ?Old English “tergan”=to irritate
task: A piece of work to be done or undertaken. Middle English “taske” a tax < Old French “tasque” < Latin “taxare”=to rate, estimate, tax.
tattle: To chatter, gossip, and tells tales. Low German “tateln”=to gabble, cackle (like a goose) < sound a goose makes.
tattoo: Image on the skin made by puncturing flesh and adding pigment. From Polynesian “tatau” < “ta’tatau”=to strike or stamp.
tatzelwurm: Mythical dragon-like 6-foot-long beast living in the Swiss alps. From Middle High German “tatze”=claw + “wurm”=worm.
taut: Subjected to great tension; stretched tight. Middle English “toght” < Old English “teon”=to pull or draw.
tawdry: Cheap and shoddy. Shortened “St. Audrey’s Lace,” who wore a neck scarf in vanity but died of a throat tumor – divine retribution.
Taylor: One who makes clothes. Anglo-Norman “taillour” < Old French “tailleur”=clothes maker < Latin=”taliator”=cutter < “taliare”=to cut.
tea: Drink made from infusion of leaves from the Camellia sinensis plant. From Chinese Amoy dialect “te” < ancient Chinese “kia.”
teacher: Someone who gives instruction on a topic. Old English “taecan”=to show < Old Germanic “*taikjan”=to show, point out.
tease: To make fun of someone, often in an unkind way. Old English “taesan” < to pull or teat apart < Old Germanic “*taisan.”
tedious: Slow, dull, and monotonous; long and drawn out. Latin “taediosus”=irksome < “tedium”=weariness, disgust < “taedere”=to weary.
tedious: Tiresome, boring, or monotonous; causing weariness. Middle English “tidiose” < Latin “taediosus” < “taedere”=to weary, tire.
teetotum: Small, four-sided spinning top. Originally “T-Totum” from letter “T” on one side < Latin “totum”=the whole or all.
telegraph: Apparatus to transmit messages over a distance. French “telegraphe” < Greek “tele”=afar + “grafos”=write. i.e. write from afar.
teliferous: Bearing darts or missiles. Latin “telifer”=dart-bearing < “telum”=dart + “ferous”=bearing/carrying.
temerate: To break a bond or a promise. Latin “temerare”=rashly; to treat irreverently or presumptuously. c.f. temerity.
temerity: Boldness, rashness, recklessness, foolhardiness. Latin “temeritas”=rashness < “temere”=by chance, blindly.
temperance: Restraint, more commonly abstinence from alcohol. Latin “temperantia”=moderation < “temperare”=to restrain.
tempest: Violent, windy storm. Old French “tempeste” < Latin “tempestas”=season, weather, storm < “tempus”=a time or season.
tempestuous: Showing violent anger. Latin “tempestas”=storm, weather + “uous”=adjective-forming suffix meaning “characterized by”
temulent: Drunk, intoxicated. Latin “temulentus” < “temetum”=an intoxicating drink.
tenacity: Persistent determination. Latin “tenere”=to hold + “-acity”=noun-creating suffix meaning “state of being”
tendency. Inclination or bias toward something. Latin “tendentum” < “tendere”=to stretch or extend “-ency”=abstract noun-creating suffix.
tendentious: Having a strong tendency especially a controversial one. Latin “tendentum” < “tendere”=to stretch “-ency”=noun-creating suffix.
tenebrific: Causing darkness or obscuring. Latin “tenebrificus” < “tenebrae”=darkness + “-fic”=suffix meaning “making.”
tenet: A principle or belief, usually in religion or philosophy. Latin “tenet”=he holds < “tenere”=to hold.
tennis: Game where two people use rackets to hit a ball backwards and forwards over a net. From Old French “tenez”=take.
tense: In a state of nervous stress. From Latin “tendere”=to stretch. Literally “stretched out.”
tent: A shelter made from a sheet of cloth supported by poles and ropes. Old French “tente” < Latin “tenta” < “tendere”=to stretch.
tenuous: Lacking substance or significance. Latin “tenius”=thin + “-osus”=abounding in or characterized by.
tepee: A round tent with a pointed top used by Native Americans. Sioux or Dakota “tipi”=house, dwelling, abode, tent.
tephromancy: Telling the future using ashes. Greek “tefra”=ashes + “-mantis”=prophet or seer.
tepid: Feeling or showing little interest or enthusiasm. Middle English “teped” < Latin “tepidus”=lukewarm < “tepere”=to be warm. @wordtoday
tequila: Mexican spirit (mezcal) made by distilling and fermenting sap of a maguey. Mexican Spanish eponym of one major production site.
termite: Destructive small, soft-bodied insect that lives in large colonies. Latin “termes”=woodworm < “terere”=to rub or bore.
termite: Insect that eats and destroys wood from trees and buildings. Latin “termes”=woodworm < “terere”=to rub < Greek “terein”=rub, bore
ternate: Arranged in threes, particularly leaf fronds. Latin “ternatus” < “ternare”=to triple or make threefold.
terrible: Causing fear and/or terror; extremely bad. Anglo-Norman “terrible” < Latin “terrere”=to frighten < Sanskrit “tras-“=tremble.
terse: Brief and to the point. Latin “tergere”=to wipe.
tetanothrum: Cosmetic for removing wrinkles. Greek “tetanothros” < “tetanos”=stretched or smooth.
tether: To bind two (or sometimes more) things together. From Old Norse “tjothr”=a tie, tether. Rope used to tie an animal to a post.
tether: To cable a laptop with a cell phone to use the phone for internet access, as TWG is now doing in Chicago O’Hare!
thalassian: Of or related to the sea. Greek “thalassios”=marine < “thalassa”=sea + “-an”=suffix meaning “of or belonging to.”
thalassography: The study of the seas and oceans. Greek “thalassios”=marine < “thalassa”=sea + “grafia”=suffix meaning “science of.”
thanatophilia: An undue or unusual fascination with death. Greek “thanatos”=death + “-philia”=liking, fondness (for).
thaumaturge: A miracle worker; a magician. Latin “thaumaturgus” < Greek “thaumatougos” < “thaumai”=wonder + “-ergos”=work.
theftuous: Secretive, sneaky, or furtive. Middle English “thiftwis” < Old English “thieft”=the actions of a thief + “wise”=in the manner of.
theic: A person addicted to drinking tea. Latin “thea”=tea + “-ic”=noun-forming suffix indicating an agent; in this case one who drinks tea.
theory: Objective set of explanations based on observation and tests. Latin “theoria” < Greek “theoros”=spectator < “theasthai”=to look on
therolatry: The worship of animals. Greek “thir”=wild beast + “latriea”=worship, service to god.
Thersitical: Given to using abusive, scurrilous speech. Eponym after ill-tongued Greek at the siege of Troy, Thersites (“the Audacious”).
thesaurus: Collection of words according to similarities of meaning. From Greek “thesauros”=treasure-house or treasury.
thespian: An actor or actress: Eponym of Greek “Thespis,” the traditional father of Greek tragedy, hence related to drama in general.
thetical: Set down or stated positively or absolutely; dogmatic. Greek “thetikos”=that can be placed < “tithenei”=to place.
thin: Having little body mass; not wide. Old English “thynne” < Old Germanic *”thunnuz” < Indo-European *”tn-“=to stretch.
think: To use your mind to consider ideas. Old English “thencan”=to consider in the mind < Proto-Germanic “*thankjan”=thought, knowing.
thirsty: Craving water or drink in general. From Old English “thurst”=sensation caused by want of a drink + suffix “-y”=have quality of
thole: Pair of pins set in the gunwale of a boat to hold an oar in place. From Old English “thol” = Old Norse “thollr”=peg or fir tree.
Thomas: Common Welsh surname meaning twin. Latin “Thomas” < Greek “thomas” < Aramaic “Ta’oma”=twin.
thong: Originally a narrow strip of leather, more recently sandal or skimpy swimwear. From Old English “thwong”=leather strip.
threnody: A song of lamentation. Greek “thrinothia” < “thrinos”=funeral lament.
throne: Ceremonial chair for a sovereign or bishop. Old French “trone” < Latin “thronos” < Greek “thronos”=elevated seat.
throne: Ceremonial chair for a sovereign. Old French “trone” < Latin “thronus” < Greek “thronos”=elevated seat.
thug: Brutal ruffian, gangster, or hoodlum. From Hindi “thag”=cheat or rogue.
thunder: Natural sound made by sudden expansion of hot air following lightning. From Old English “thunrian”=to speak loudly.
thural: Of or pertaining to incense. Latin “turalis” < “tus”=incense + “-al”=suffix meaning “pertaining to.”
Thursday: Day of the week from Old English “thunresdag”=Thor’s Day. Norse god of thunder, Thor, whose name in Old Norse is “thorr”=thunder.
thwaite: Piece of ground cleared from forest or reclaimed from waste. Old Norse “thveit”=a cutting < Old English “thwitan”=to cut down.
thwart: Hinder or prevent plans, or desires. Middle English “thwerte”=across < Latin “torquere”=twist < Sanskrit “tarku”=spindle
thyme: Low-growing aromatic herb of the mint family.Old French “thym” < Latin “thymum” < Greek “thuein”=to burn as a sacrifice.
tiara: Jeweled band worn on the front of a woman’s hair. Latin “tiara” < Greek “tiaros”=a Persian head-dress.
tick: Tiny blood-sucking parasite that lives on animals. Old English “ticia” < ? West Germanic “*tika.”
ticking: The sound of a clock. Middle English “tek”=touch lightly < ?Low German “tikk”=a touch. Related to Dutch “tikken”=to pat, tap.
tiffin: A light meal or snack, often around midday. Anglo-Indian “tiffin” < slang “tiff”=to sip, drink slowly. Unknown origin.
tiger: Carnivorous cat, largest of the cat family, with a tawny coat and black stripes. From Greek “tigris” < Zend “tighri”=arrow.
time: The passage of existence, measured in periods such as seconds. Old English “tima” < Old Germanic “*timon” < root “*ti”=to stretch.
timorous: Timid by nature or revealing timidity. Middle English “tymerous” < Old French “temorous” < Latin “timere”=to fear.
tincture: Medicine made by dissolving a drug in alcohol: a hint of something. Latin “tingere”=to dye i.e. tinge with something.
tinsel: Strings of shiny paper used for decoration. Old French “estinceler”=to sparkle < Latin “scintilla”=a spark.
tired: Weakened or exhausted by action. From Old English “tiorian”=to give out or come to an end + past ppl. “-ed”=past marker.
titillate: To stimulate or excite someone, often in a mildly sexual manner. Latin “titillare”=to tickle.
titivate: To make small changes to improve appearance; add the finishing touches. Perhaps from “tidy”=neat + quasi-Latin ending “-ivate.”
title: Name of a book, song etc. or person’s job. Old English “titul” < Latin “titulus”=inscription over an object to label it.
titubate: To stammer or falter in speech. Latin “titubare”=to stagger, fall, or stumble.
tochus: The backside, buttocks, bottom, anus. Yiddish “tokhes” < Hebrew “taḥaṯ”=beneath.
tocsin: An alarm bell. Old French “tocquassen” < Provencal “tocasenh” < “tocar”=to touch + “senh”=signal bell.
toilet: Large bowl used for urinating/defecating. French “toilette”=clothes bag. C18th “room for dressing that includes a lavatory.”
tomato: Soft round red fruit eaten raw or cooked as a vegetable. From Nahuatl (Aztec) “tomatl” < “tomana”=to swell + “atl”=water.
tomb: Hole or vault in the earth for burying the dead. Old French “tombe” < Latin “tumba” < Greek “tumbos”=sepulchral mound.
tome: Large, heavy, academic book. French “tome” < Latin “tomus” < Greek “tomos”=volume, section of a book < Greek root “tom-“=to cut.
tonitruate: Make a sound like thunder. Latin “tonitruare”=to thunder < “tonitrus”=thunder.
tonitruone: Device made of a wooden frame and thin metal for imitating sound of thunder, invented in 1908 by Ignace Paderewski.
tonsure: Part of a monk’s head left bare by shaving the hair. Old French “tonsure” < Latin “tonsura”=a clipping < “tondere”=to shear or clip
tool: General name for a thing that helps you perform a task. Old English “tol” < Old Germanic “*tow-“=to prepare or make.
tooth: Hard, enamel-coated structures in the jaw used for biting and chewing. Old English “toth”< Old Germanic “*tanþ.”
toponymy: The study of place names. From Greek “topos”=place + “onuma”=word.
torc/torque: Necklace or band worn by ancient Gauls and Britons. Latin “torques”=twisted neck-chain or collar < “torquere”=to twist.
torch: Light carried in the hand, originally made from twisted hemp soaked in pitch. Old French “torche” < Latin “torcere”=to twist.
torchwood: Anagram of “Doctor Who” first used as code for the Dr.Who TV series. Also the inflammable wood of certain trees used for torches.
toreador: Person who fights bulls. Spanish “toreador”=bull baiter < “toro”=bull < Latin “taurus” = bull.
torment: Severe physical or mental pain. Old French “tourment” < Latin “tormentum”=instrument of torture < “torquere”=to twist.
torpid: Mentally or physically inactive; lethargic. Latin “torpidus”=benumbed < “torpere”=to be numb.
torpor: State of motor and mental inactivity with partial suspension of sensibility. Latin < “torpore”=to be numb
torque/torc: Necklace or band worn by ancient Gauls and Britons. Latin “torques”=twisted neck-chain or collar < “torquere”=to twist.
torrent: Strong and fast-moving stream of water. French “torrent” < Latin “torrentem”=raging, roaring < “torrere”=to burn, scorch, or parch.
torrid: Very hot and dry. Latin “torridus” < “torrere” = To dry with heat + “-idus” = adjective-forming suffix.
tortilla: Mexican flat bread made from wheat or maize flour. Spanish “torta”=cake + “-illa”=dimunutive; a “small cake.”
tortuous: Not straightforward; full of twists. Latin “tortuosus”=full of turns and twists < “torquere”=to twist.
torture: To inflict pain on someone as punishment or to extract information. Latin “tortura”=twisting, torture < “torquere”=to twist.
Tory: Common slang for UK Conservative party member. From Irish “toruighe”=plunderer, pursuer, robber. Party of Yorkist Tories 1680.
tousled: Scruffy, untidy in dress. Middle English “betouse”=to handle roughly, drag around < Old High German “zirzuson”=pull to pieces.
towel: Piece of cloth used to dry oneself after washing or bathing. Old French “toaille” < Old High German “twahan”=to wash.
town: Collection of houses and people larger than a village. From Old English “tun”=enclosure with buildings.
toxin: A poison of plant or animal origin, created by a microbe. Latin “toxicum”=poison < Greek “toxicon”=poison for arrows < “toxon”=bow
traboccant: Superabundant. Italian “traboccare”=to overflow.
tragedy: An event causing suffering or great harm. Latin “tragoedia”=tragic play < Greek=”tragos”=he-goat, sacrificed before a play.
tragic: Bringing harm, suffering, or disaster. From Greek “tragikos”=pertaining to a goat. “Tragos”=goat. Song before sacrifice of a goat.
train: Long piece of material attached to the back of a formal dress. Middle English “trayne”=a delay < Latin “trahere”=to pull or draw.
traitor: A person who betrays someone or something. Old French “traitour” < Latin “traditor” < “tradere”=to hand over.
tramp: Homeless person who wanders around. From Middle Low German “trampen”=to stamp.
trance: State of being half-conscious, not responsive to stimuli. Old French “transer” < Latin “transire” < “trans”=across + “ire”=to go.
tranche: Part of a larger transaction e.g. a loan installment. From French “trancher”=to cut < Old French “trenche”=path through a wood.
tranquillity: A state of peace and quiet. Latin “tranquillus”=quiet + “-ity”=suffix meaning “being in a state of.”
transcription: In linguistics, representing speech sounds with letters or symbol. Latin “trans”=across + “scribere”=to write.
transfer: To move from one place to another. Latin “transferre” < “trans”=across + “ferre”=to bear, carry, or bring.
transgress: To cross a boundary or limit; to break a law. From Latin “transgredi” < “trans”=across + “gradi”=to step or walk.
transgress: To go beyond limits or boundaries; to break rules. From Latin “transgredi” < “trans-“=across + “gradi”=to step or walk
translate: In linguistics, express the sense of words in one language in another. Latin “transferre” < “trans”=across + “ferre”=to carry.
transliteration: Writing a word in one language using the letters of another. Latin “trans”=across + “littera”=letter.
translucent: Not transparent, but clear enough to allow light to pass through. Latin “translucere” < “trans-“=through + “lucere”=to shine.
transmute: To change in form, nature, or substance. Latin “transmutare” < “trans”=across + “mutare”=to change.
transparent: Allowing light and images to pass through clearly. Latin “transparere” < “trans-“=through” + “parere”=to appear.
transphobia: Fear or hatred of transsexual or transgender people. Latin “trans”=crossing, across + Greek “phobos”=fear.
transsexual: Person who strongly identifies with the opposite sex and may undergo surgery. From Latin “trans”=across + “sexus”=gender.
transvestite: Someone who likes to dress in the clothes of the opposite gender. Coined 1910 from Latin “trans”=across + “vestire”=to dress.
traulism: Stammering or stuttering; dysfluent speech. Greek “traulismos” < “trauliksein”=to lisp or mispronounce letters.
trauma: A physical or psychological injury; also the state or condition caused by the injury. Greek “trauma”=wound.
travado: Sudden violent storm of wind and rain with thunder and lightning; a tornado. Portuguese “travados” < “travar”=to twist, twine.
travails: Bodily or mental chores or labors. From Old French “travail”=suffering or painful effort < “trepalium”=an instrument of torture.
travel: Journey from place to place. From Old French “travaillier”=to torment, harrass < poss. Latin “trepalium”=an instrument of torture.
travesty: Role played by character of opposite sex e.g. man playing a woman in English pantomime. From Latin “trans”=over + “vestire”=dress.
treacle: Thick, sticky dark syrup made from partly refined sugar. Greek “theriake”=antidote against venom” < “therion”=wild beast.
treason: Criminal disloyalty to one’s country. Anglo-Norman “treysoun” < Latin “tradere”=to hand over, to betray.
treasury: Place where money and valuables are stored. Old French “tresor” < Latin “thesaurus”=wealth, riches < Greek “thesauros”=treasure.
treat: Event, action, or object that gives pleasure to someone. From Latin “tractare”= to drag/handle (“tractor” has same root).
treif: (tref,treyfe) Unfit to be eaten under Jewish law. From Hebrew “trefah”=torn; more specifically meat torn from one animal by another.
trek: Long journey using an ox wagon or simply a difficult journey. From Dutch “trekken” to march < Old High German “trechan”= to draw.
tremor: Small shaking of the earth; bodily trembling. From Old French “tremour”=terror or fear < Latin “tremore”=to tremble.
trespass: To occupy private land without permission. Old French “trespasser”=to pass over < Latin “trans=”=beyond + “passare”=to pass.
tress: Plait or braid of women’s hair; a lock of hair. Old French “tresca” < plait/braid < Latin “tricia” < Greek “triksa”=triple (plait).
tribune: A protector of people’s rights. Latin “tribunus”=head of a tribe. Old Roman Official chosen by plebians to protect their interests.
trichard: A betrayer, traitor, or cheat. Old French “trichart” < to deceive < ?Latin “tricari”=to play tricks.
trick: Something done to deceive someone, usually a bad thing. From Latin “tricari”=be evasive or deceptive.
trick: Something done to deceive someone, usually a bad thing. From Latin “tricari”=be evasive or deceptive.
trifle: A thing of little value. Middle English “trufel” = false or idle tale < Old French “truffler”=to deceive, cheat, mock.
trilogist: One who writes trilogies. Greek “trilogia”=series of 3 tragedies < “tri”=3 + “logos”=words, dialog + “-ist”=suffix “one who…”
trim: To make hair neat by cutting off irregular parts. Old English “trymman”=to arrange, make firm < “trum”=firm, stable, strong.
trip: Short voyage or journey. From Old English “treper”=to strike the ground with feet in joy, annoyance, or to dance.
tripe: Stomach of a cow, or other ruminant, used as food. Old French “trippe”=entrails of an animal.
triskaidekaphobia: abnormal and irrational fear of number 13. From Greek”treis”=three + “kai”=and + “deka”=ten + “phobos”=fear.
trite: Worn out through overuse; hackneyed; devoid of freshness. Latin “tritus” < past participle of “terere”=to rub.
triumph: A great victory. Old French “triumphe” < Latin “triumphus”=award for victorious commander < Greek “thriambos”=hymn to Bacchus.
trivial: Of little value; ordinary. From Latin “trivium”=the lower three of seven liberal arts in Medieval studies: grammar, rhetoric, logic
troll: Scandinavian mythical cave-dwelling giant. Old Norse and Swedish “troll.” n.b. “trolldomr”=witchcraft.
trombone: Brass instrument with sliding tube to change notes. Italian “trombone”=a great trump < “tromba”=trumpet.
troop: A small body of soldiers. Old French “trope” < Latin “troppus”=a flock.
trope: A figure of speech; a motif or recurrent theme. Latin “tropus”=figure of speech < Greek “treipen”=to turn or compare.
trophy: A cup or object awarded as a prize. Greek “tropaion”=building erected after a victory in war < “tropi”=cause to turn, defeat.
trouble: Disturbance, agitation, stir up. Old French “torbler” < Latin “turbidus”=full of confusion or disorder < “turba”=crowd.
troublous: Causing grief, pain; disturbing. Old French “troubleus” < Latin “turbidus”=confused, perplexed < “turba”=crowd, disturbance.
trout pout: Lips injected with collagen that look too plump – like fish lips. From “trout”=a type of fish + “pout”=push out the lips.
truant: A child who skips school without permission. Middle English “truont”=an idler; vagabond. Probably ultimately Celtic in origin.
truckle: A small. barrel-shaped cheese, particularly cheddar. Anglo-Norman “trokle” < Latin “trochlea” < Greek “trokilia”=a pulley wheel.
truculent: Bad-tempered or given to aggression; argumentative. Latin “trunculentus” < “trucem”=fierce or savage.
true: In accordance with fact or reality; accurate. Old English “trēowe”=loyal, steadfast < Germanic “*trewjj”=having good faith.
trumpet: Brass instrument with bell-shaped horn and keys to change notes. Old French “trompette” < diminutive of “trompe,” ult. imitative.
truncheon: Short stick or club once carried by UK police officers. Old English “tronchon”=stump < Latin “trunchus”=trunk (of wood).
truth: The quality of being true or factual.Being in accord with the facts. From Old English “triewth”=fidelity or faithfulness.
tryst: A lovers’ rendezvous. Middle English “trist”=hunting station < Old French “triste” < Latin “trista”=place hunting hounds are held.
tsunami: Large, often destructive, sea wave caused by seismic activity. From Japanese “tsu”=harbor + “nami”=waves.
tuatara: Large, dark bronze-green lizard with spikes on its back, found in New Zealand. From Mauri “tua”=on the back + “tara”=spine.
tudiculate: To bruise or pound. Latin “tudiculare” < “tudes”=a mallet < “tundere”=to pound.
tulip: Flower with head like a slender cup. Vulgar Turkish “tuliband” < Persian “dulband”=turban; the flower looks like one.
tumble: To fall suddenly or clumsily. Fall headlong. Middle English “tumbel” < Old English “tumbian”=to dance.
tumor: A Swelling; abnormal tissue growth in/on a body. From Latin “tumor” < “tumere”=to swell.
tumult: Loud, confused noise, especially one caused by a mass of people. Old French “temulte” < Latin “tumultus” < “tumere”=to swell.
tun: Large container, especially for wine. From Old English “tunne”=cask.
turban: Headdress made by wrapping long piece of cloth around the head. Turkish “tulbent” < Persian “duband.”
turbid: Unclear, opaque, obscure. Muddy or thick with smoke. From Latin “turbidus”=confused < Greek “tyrbe”=turmoil.
turbinado: Type of refined brown cane sugar with large crystals. Portuguese “turbinar”=to spin < Latin “turbinem”=tornado, spinning top.
turgid: Excessively ornate language; swollen or bloated. From Latin “turgidus”=swollen < “turgere”=to swell.
turnip: Round root vegetable with white or cream flesh. Old French “tour”=round or turn + Latin “napus”=general turnip-like plants.
turpitude: Corrupt, depraved or degenerate practice. French “turpitude” < Latin “turpis”=base + “tude”=suffix for abstract noun.
turtle: Soft bodied reptile with a hard shell, lives mainly in water. French “tortue”=tortoise < Latin “tortuca”=twisted (like its feet).
turtle: Soft bodied reptile with a hard shell, lives mainly in water. French “tortue”=tortoise < Latin “tortuca”=twisted (like its feet).
tweezers: Small pincers used to pluck hair. French “etui”=small case of needles, cosmetics < Old French “estui”=prison < “estuier”=shut up.
twiffler: A plate sized between a dessert and a dinner plate. Dutch “twijfelaar” < ” twijfelen”=to vacillate, to be unsure.
twin: A person or thing that is exactly like another. Old English “twinn”=double < “twi-“=two.
twitten: Narrow path between two walls or hedges. Old English “twicen”=a fork in a road, a forked way.
twitter: To make chirping noises, like a bird. Imitative origin – sound of twittering c.f. Old High German “zwiziron” and Swedish “qvittra”
twitterati: Users of Twitter, usually applied to one with many followers. Portmanteau of Latin “literati”=well-read people + “Twitter.”
twitterholic: Person addicted to Twitter, both sending and receiving tweets. Portmanteau of “Twitter” and “alcohol” + “-ic”=pertaining to
twittumcised: Of a Tweet with the end cut off because is has over 140 characters. Portmanteau of “Twitter” and “circumcised.”
tycoon: A wealthy, powerful person in business or industry. Japanese “taikun”=great lord or prince < “ta”=great + “kiun”=prince.
typhoon: A hurricane in the western Pacific or Indian oceans. From Greek “Typhon”=god of winds, and/or Cantonese “daai feng”=great wind.
tyrant: A cruel and oppressive ruler. Latin “tyrannus” < Greek “turannos”=absolute ruler unlimited by law < “kuros”=commander, ruler.
tyro: A beginner or novice. Latin “tiro”=a recruit, a young soldier.
tyromancy: Telling the future using cheese. From Greek “tyros”=cheese + “-manteia”-prophet/seer.