Puneet Varma (Editor)

Online Etymology Dictionary

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Type of business

Online (c. 2000)

Available in

Lancaster, PA, US

Online Etymology Dictionary

Type of site
Etymological dictionary

Key people
Douglas Harper, Founder Dan McCormack, Web Design and coding

The Online Etymology Dictionary is a free online dictionary that describes the origins of English-language words.



Douglas Harper (a.k.a. "The Sciolist") compiled the etymology dictionary to record the history and evolution of more than 30,000 words, including slang and technical terms. The core body of its etymology information stems from Ernest Weekley's An Etymological Dictionary of Modern English (1921). Other sources include the Middle English Dictionary and the Barnhart Dictionary of Etymology (by Robert Barnhart and others). In producing his large dictionary, Douglas Harper says that he is essentially and for the most part a compiler, an evaluator of etymology reports which others have made. Harper works as a Copy editor/Page designer for LNP Media Group.

As of June 2015, there were nearly 50,000 entries in the dictionary.

Reviews and reputation

The Online Etymology Dictionary has been referenced by Ohio University's library as a relevant etymological resource and cited in the Chicago Tribune as one of the "best resources for finding just the right word". It is cited in numerous articles as a source for explaining the history and evolution of words.


Online Etymology Dictionary Wikipedia

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