earthling

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See also: Earthling

English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English erthling (farmer, ploughman) [and other forms] (in glossaries),[1] from Old English ierþling, eorþling (farmer, husbandman, ploughman) [and other forms], from eorþe (ground; dirt; planet Earth) (ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *h₁er- (earth)) + -ling (suffix forming personal nouns).[2] The English word is analysable as earth +‎ -ling.

Noun[edit]

earthling (plural earthlings)

  1. (obsolete except historical) One who tills the earth; a farmer, a husbandman, a ploughman.
    • 1714, John Fortescue-Aland [i.e., John Fortescue Aland, 1st Baron Fortescue of Credan], “Hereafter is Schewyd, What of the Kyngs Lyvelood Gevyn Away, may Best be Takyn Ageyne”, in John Fortescue, The Difference between an Absolute and a Limited Monarchy; as is More Particularly Regards the English Constitution. [], London: [] W[illiam] Bowyer, [], for E. Parker [], and T. Ward [], OCLC 973231944, footnote a, page 79:
      Eoꞃðlinᵹ [Eorthling], is a Husbandman, or Earthling.
    • 1838 July, [Henry Wadsworth Longfellow], “Art. IV.—1. A Dictionary of the Anglo-Saxon Language, [] [book review]”, in The North American Review, volume XLVII, number C, Boston, Mass.: Otis, Broaders, & Co., [], ISSN 0029-2397, OCLC 1041859381, page 94:
      And we have not imagination enough to believe, that either the Danish boors, who were earthlings (yrthlingas) in the country, or the Danish soldiers, who, as history tells us, were dandies at the court of King Canute, could, in the brief space of twenty years, have so overlaid or interlarded the pure Anglo-Saxon with their provincialisms, as to give it a new character, and thus form a new period in its history, as was afterwards done by the Normans.

Etymology 2[edit]

See Earthling.

Noun[edit]

earthling (plural earthlings)

  1. Alternative letter-case form of Earthling
    • 1593, Tho[mas] Nashe, Christs Teares Over Ierusalem. [], London: [] Iames Roberts, and are to be solde by Andrewe Wise, [], OCLC 846581854, folio 60, verso:
      VVe (of all earthlings) are Gods vtmoſt ſubiects, the laſt (in a manner) that he bought to his obedience: ſhal we then forgette that vvee are any ſubiects of hys, becauſe (as amongſt his Angels) he is not viſibly conuerſant amongſt vs?

References[edit]

  1. ^ erthling, n.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007.
  2. ^ Compare “† earthling, n.1”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2020.

Anagrams[edit]