Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search


Alternative forms[edit]

  • (without rhotacism of the stem consonant): quaesō


Uncertain. According to Nussbaum and de Vaan, from Proto-Italic *kwai-s-e/o, from Proto-Indo-European *kweh₂- (to acquire), via an se/o-present built upon an i-present form *kweh₂-i- (to acquire). In this case, cognates would include Ancient Greek πέπαμαι (pépamai, to get, acquire), Old Prussian quoi (I/you want) and quāits (desire), Lithuanian kviẽsti (to invite) and probably Albanian kam (I have).

In some sources etymologized as if from Proto-Indo-European *kwoys-, *kweys- (to see), but this as deemed uncertain by Schrijver in 1991.

LIV accepts Szemerényi's 1960 etymology that it is a derivation of *h₂eys- (to seek, ask), via the form *ko-ais-(s)-e/o-.



present active quaerō, present infinitive quaerere, perfect active quaesīvī, supine quaesītum

  1. I seek, look for
    Quaerendo invenietis
    By seeking ye shall find.
    Quaerite Dominum
    Seek ye the Lord
  2. I ask, question, inquire.
  3. I strive for; endeavor; seek to obtain
  4. I miss, lack
  5. I desire, require


Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]



  • quaero” in Charlton T. Lewis & Charles Short, A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1879.
  • quæro” on pages 1,288–9 of Félix Gaffiot’s Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français (1934)
  • quaerō” on page 1,533 of the Oxford Latin Dictionary (1st ed., 1968–82)
  • quaerere” on page 877 of Jan Frederik Niermeyer’s Mediae Latinitatis Lexicon Minus (1976)
  • Michiel de Vaan (2008), Etymological Dictionary of Latin and the other Italic Languages, Leiden, Boston: Brill Academic Publishers, page 503