- yacht[yacht 词源字典]
- yacht:  A yacht is etymologically a boat for ‘chasing’ others. The word was borrowed from early modern Dutch jaghte. This was short for jaghtschip, literally ‘chase ship’, a compound noun formed from jaght, a derivative of the verb jagen ‘hunt, chase’, and schip ‘ship’. The Dutch word (whose present-day form is jacht) has been borrowed into many other European languages, including French and German jacht and Russian jakhta.
[yacht etymology, yacht origin, 英语词源]
- Yankee:  Yankee appears to have started life as a nickname for Dutchmen, and it is thought that it may represent Dutch Janke, a diminutive form of the common Dutch forename Jan. It was first used as a term for inhabitants of New England (where of course there were many early Dutch settlers) in the mid-18th century, and its application gradually spread to cover all the northern states and (more loosely, by non- American speakers) the whole of the USA.
- yard: Yard ‘enclosed area’ [OE] and yard ‘three feet’ [OE] are distinct words, both of ancient ancestry. The former probably goes back ultimately to Indo-European *ghorto-, which also produced Latin cohors ‘court’ (source of English cohort and court) and hortus ‘garden’ (source of English horticulture) and Russian gorod ‘town’ (as in Leningrad).
Its prehistoric Germanic descendant was *gard-, which, as well as providing English with yard, has produced garden, garth  (via Old Norse), and the second syllable of orchard. Yard ‘three feet’ originally meant ‘stick, rod’ (a sense preserved nautically, as in yardarm ). It goes back ultimately to prehistoric Germanic *gazdaz ‘pointed stick’ (source of the gad of gadfly , etymologically the fly with the ‘sting’).
From this was derived West Germanic *gazdjō, which evolved into German gerte ‘sapling, riding cane’, Dutch gard ‘twig, rod’, and English yard. The Anglo-Saxons used the term as a unit of measurement of land, equal to about five metres (what later became known as a rod, pole, or perch), but its modern use for ‘three feet’ did not emerge until the 14th century.
=> cohort, court, garden, garth, horticulture, orchard; gadfly
- yarn: [OE] Yarn comes from prehistoric Germanic *garn-, which also produced German, Swedish, and Danish garn and Dutch garen. This in turn went back to an Indo-European base whose other descendants include Greek khordé ‘string’ (source of English chord, cord). The sailors’ expression spin a yarn ‘tell a story’ led in the 19th century to the use of yarn for ‘story, tale’.
=> chord, cord
- yawn: [OE] Yawn goes back ultimately to the Indo-European base *ghei-, *ghi-, which also produced Greek kháskein ‘gape’ (a close relative of English chasm ) and Latin hiāre ‘gape, yawn’ (source of English hiatus ). The base passed into prehistoric Germanic as *gai-, *gi-, whose surviving descendants are German gähnen, Dutch geeuwen, and English yawn. English gap and gape probably come from an extension of the same Indo-European base.
=> chasm, gap, gape, hiatus
- year: [OE] Year is part of a widespread European family of ‘time’-words that goes back ultimately to Indo-European *jēr-, *jōr-. This also produced Greek hórā ‘season’ (ultimate source of English hour), Czech jaro ‘spring’, and Avestan (the ancient Persian sacred language) yāre ‘year’. From it was descended prehistoric Germanic *jǣram, which has evolved into German jahr, Dutch jaar, Swedish år, Dutch aar, and English year. It has been speculated that the Indo-European forms themselves may have been derived from a base meaning ‘go’, in which case the etymological notion underlying the word would be of time proceeding.
- yearn: see eucharist
- yeast: [OE] Yeast is etymologically a substance that causes ‘fermentation’. For its ultimate source is the Indo-European base *jes- ‘boil, foam, froth’, which also produced Greek zeín ‘boil’ (source of English eczema) and Welsh iās ‘seething’. Its Germanic descendant produced German gischt ‘yeast, froth’, Dutch gist, gest ‘yeast’, and English yeast.
- yell: see nightingale
- yellow: [OE] Yellow is a member of an ancient and widespread family of European colourterms descended from Indo-European *ghel-, *ghol-, which denoted both ‘yellow’ and ‘green’. From it were descended Latin helvus ‘yellowish’ and possibly galbus ‘greenishyellow’ (source of French jaune ‘yellow’ and English jaundice), Greek kholé ‘bile’ (source of English choleric, melancholy, etc), Russian zheltyj ‘yellow’, Lithuanian geltonas ‘yellow’, and English gall and gold.
In the Germanic languages it has produced German gelb, Dutch gel, Swedish and Danish gul, and English yellow. A yolk [OE] is etymologically a ‘yellow’ substance.
=> choleric, gall, gold, jaundice, melancholy, yolk
- yeoman:  Etymologically, a yeoman is probably simply a ‘young man’; indeed originally the word denoted a ‘junior household servant’, between a squire and a page in rank. It started life as yongman, a compound of Middle English yong ‘young’ and man, and was gradually eroded to yeoman. The modern sense ‘freeholding farmer’, and its metaphorical extensions, emerged in the 15th century.
=> man, young
- yes: [OE] Yes is descended from Old English gese. It is thought that this was a compound formed from gēa ‘yes’ (ancestor of archaic English yea and related to German and Dutch ja ‘yes’) and sīe, the third-person present singular subjunctive of be, and that it therefore originally meant literally ‘yes, may it be so’. It was at first used as a response to negative questions, while yea was used for positive questions, but around the end of the 16th century this distinction began to disappear, and yea has since died out.
- yesterday: [OE] The yester- of yesterday (and of yesteryear , coined by Dante Gabriel Rossetti) was originally a free-standing word, meaning ‘yesterday’, but by the time records of it in Old English begin it was already locked into a collocation with day. Its ultimate source is Indo-European *ghes, which also produced Latin herī (source of French hier, Italian and Romanian ieri, and Spanish ayer), Welsh doe, German gestern, and Dutch gisteren.
- yet: [OE] Yet is one of the mystery words of English. It seems to have emerged from the Anglo-Frisian group of dialects in northeastern Europe before the Angles and Saxons crossed the Channel (Old Frisian had iēta), but its ultimate source is unknown.
- yield: [OE] Yield is descended from prehistoric Germanic *gelthan ‘pay’, which also produced German gelten ‘pay’ (German geld ‘money’ comes from the same base). It originally meant ‘pay’ in English too, and it seems the sense ‘surrender’, which emerged in the 13th century, may be due to the influence of French rendre ‘give’, which is used reflexively for ‘surrender’.
- yoghurt:  It has taken a long time for yoghurt to settle down orthographically, and the process is not yet complete. It was originally acquired (from Turkish yoghurt) in the 1620s as yoghurd, and since then spellings such as yaghourt, yooghort, yughard, yohourth, and yaourt (reflecting the fact that Turkish gh is silent) have been tried. Yoghurt still vies with yogurt.
- yoke: [OE] The etymological ideal underlying yoke is of ‘joining’ – here, of joining two animals together. The word came ultimately from Indo-European *jugom, which also produced Latin jugum ‘yoke’ (source of English conjugal, jugular , and subjugate ), Welsh iau ‘yoke’, Czech jho ‘yoke’, Sanskrit yugám ‘yoke’, etc.
The prehistoric Germanic descendant of this was *jukam (borrowed into Finnish as juko), which evolved into German joch, Dutch juk, Swedish ok, Danish aag, and English yoke. The Indo-European form itself was derived from the base *jug-, *jeug-, *joug- ‘join’, which also produced Latin jungere ‘join’ (source of English join, junction, etc) and Sanskrit yoga ‘union’ (acquired by English via Hindi as yoga , which literally denotes ‘union with the universal spirit’).
=> conjugate, join, jugular, junction, subjugate, yoga
- yolk: see yellow
- you: [OE] You was originally the accusative and dative form of ye ‘you’, but it began to take over as the nominative form in the 15th century, and at the same time was in the process of ousting the singular thou to become the general secondperson pronoun. Its West Germanic ancestor *iwwiz, which also produced German euch and Dutch u, went back ultimately to Indo-European *ju (source also of Greek úmme, Sanskrit yūyám, and Lithuanian jūs). Your [OE] comes from the same source, with the genitive ending -er.
- young: [OE] Young is part of a widespread family of words that go back to Indo-European *juwngkós ‘young’ (others include Welsh ieuanc, Irish ōg, and Sanskrit juvaçás). And this in turn was derived from *juwen-, which produced Latin juvenis (source of English junior, juvenile, etc), Lithuanian jaunas, Russian junyj, Bulgarian jun, etc.
The Indo-European adjective passed into prehistoric Germanic as *juwunggaz. This was later contracted to *junggaz, which evolved into German jung, Dutch jong, Swedish and Danish ung, and English young. Youth [OE], and its relatives German Jugend and Dutch jeugd, go back to prehistoric West Germanic *jugunth-, an alteration of *juwunth-, which was derived from *juwunggaz ‘young’.
=> junior, juvenile, yeoman, youth