achever

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French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French à, from Latin ad; + chief, from Latin caput ‎(head). Also possibly from a Vulgar Latin root *accapāre. Compare Catalan, Occitan, Portuguese and Spanish acabar.

  • In Vulgar Latin, the word is *accapāre.
  • The /a/ in the beginning is unaffected because that syllable is closed.
  • However, "ca" /ka/ regularly gave rise to /kʲə/ > /t͡ʃə/
  • The /p/ became voiced /b/, which softened to become /v/.
  • The ending -āre regularly gave rise to -er.
  • Thus the spelling achever (/at͡ʃəver/) was established.
  • The /t͡ʃ/ regularly gave rise to /ʃ/.
  • The final "r" regularly became silent.
  • Thus the pronunciation is now /aʃəve/.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

achever

  1. (transitive) to finish, to complete
    • 1837, Louis Viardot, L’Ingénieux Hidalgo Don Quichotte de la Manchefr.Wikisource, translation of El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Chapter II:
      Ayant donc achevé ses préparatifs, il ne voulut pas attendre davantage pour mettre à exécution son projet.
      Having thus completed his preparations, he did not want to wait any longer to put his project into execution.
  2. (transitive) to finish off (someone who is already incapacitated)
  3. (reflexive, s'achever) to finish

Derived terms[edit]

Conjugation[edit]

  • This verb is conjugated mostly like the regular -er verbs (parler and chanter and so on), but the -e- /ə/ of the second-to-last syllable becomes -è- /ɛ/ when the next vowel is a silent or schwa -e-. For example, in the third-person singular present indicative, we have il achève rather than *il acheve. Other verbs conjugated this way include lever and mener. Related but distinct conjugations include those of appeler and préférer.

Anagrams[edit]

External links[edit]


Middle French[edit]

Verb[edit]

achever

  1. to finish; to complete

Conjugation[edit]

  • Middle French conjugation varies from one text to another. Hence, the following conjugation should be considered as typical, not as exhaustive.

Synonyms[edit]