- 1 English
- 2 Middle English
From Middle English hight (“to be named, be called”) (alternative past participle of hoten), from Old English hēht (preterite of hātan, “to be named, be called”), from *hehait-, reduplicate preterite base of Proto-Germanic *haitaną (“to call, command, summon”), from Proto-Indo-European *key(w)-, *kyew- (“to set in motion”). Cognate with West Frisian hjitte, Dutch heten, Low German heten, German heißen, Danish hedde, Norwegian Nynorsk heita, Swedish heta, Latin cieō (“I call, I set in motion”).
hight (third-person singular simple present - or (obsolete) hote, present participle - or (obsolete) hoting, simple past and past participle hight) hight is only the preterite or past participle, not the infinitive or present.
- (archaic, transitive) To call, name.
- Childe Harold was he hight.
- (archaic, intransitive) To be called or named.
- Bright was her hue, and Geraldine she hight.
- (archaic, dialectal) To command; to enjoin.
- I hight ye take me wi' ye. I ne can no lenger her b'live.
The verb hight has many different forms in many different regions. For the present tense the form het is rather common. The usage example for the sense "to command or to enjoin" can be rendered in standard English in the following manner:
- I hight ye take me wi' ye. I ne can no lenger her b'live = I bid you take me with you. I can no longer stay here.
Moreover, the verb hight, in the sense "to enjoin", is mainly used for emphasis, and as such is untranslatable into standard English. For example: I het ye leit mee men ga. 'Ey ne dyde nathing te na ane. 'Ey ar wyteless. (Please, let my men go. They did not do anything to any one. They are blameless).
It should also be noted that the verb hight survives only as part of the oral tradition in rural Scotland and Northern England. It is not used in common speech.
hight (not comparable)
- (archaic) Called, named.
hight (plural hights)
- Obsolete form of height.
Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for hight in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)
- English: hight (obsolete)