- 1 English
- 2 Old English
- 3 Old Irish
- 4 Old Saxon
From Middle English to-, from Old English tō-, te- (“apart, away”), from Proto-Germanic *twiz- (“apart, in two”), from Proto-Indo-European *dis- (“apart, asunder”), *dwis- (“two-ways, in twain”). Cognate with Saterland Frisian tou-, Dutch toe-, te-, German zu-, zer-, Latin dis- (“apart”). More at dis-.
- (no longer productive outside dialects) Prefix meaning "apart", "away", "asunder", "in pieces", or expressing separation, negation, or intensity.
- (rare, dialectal or no longer productive) to, toward, at, or on (this).
- ^ Whitney, The Century dictionary and cyclopedia, to-
From Proto-Germanic *twiz-, from Proto-Indo-European *dwis-. Cognate with Old Frisian ti-, te-, Old Saxon te-, Old High German zi-, zir-, zar-, zur- (German zer-), Gothic 𐌳𐌹𐍃- (dis-), and with Latin dis-.
- (as unstressed te-, ti- or stressed tō-) forming (mainly) verbs from verbs, with a sense of ‘in pieces, apart, asunder’, or with intensive force
- (stressed prefix) used to form substantives from other nouns
- The prefix has two basic forms: stressed (tō-) and unstressed (te-, ti-). Originally, the unstressed formed verbs, and the stressed formed other derivatives (nouns, adverbs, etc). This distinction was blurred in later Old English where the stressed form came to be used for both
- do- (pretonic form)
to- (pretonic do-)
From Proto-Germanic *tō, *ta (“to”), from Proto-Indo-European *de, *do (“to”). A same use of this preposition as a prefix for verbs is found in Old English (to- (“to”)), Old High German (zuo- (“to”)), Dutch (toe- (“to”)), German (zu- (“to”)) and modern English (particle "to" in "kneel to")
- Creates words with a sense of ‘towards, to, against’