whet

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English whetten, from Old English hwettan (to whet, sharpen, incite, encourage), from Proto-West Germanic *hwattjan, from Proto-Germanic *hwatjaną (to incite, sharpen), from Proto-Indo-European *kʷeh₁d- (sharp).

Cognate with Dutch wetten (to whet, sharpen), German wetzen (to whet, sharpen), Icelandic hvetja (to whet, encourage, catalyze), dialectal Danish hvæde (to whet).

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

whet (third-person singular simple present whets, present participle whetting, simple past and past participle whetted or whet)

  1. (transitive) To hone or rub on with some substance, as a piece of stone, for the purpose of sharpening – see whetstone.
  2. (transitive) To stimulate or make more keen.
    to whet one's appetite or one's courage
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To preen.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

whet (plural whets)

  1. The act of whetting something.
  2. That which whets or sharpens; especially, an appetizer.
    • 1714 July 30 (Gregorian calendar), Joseph Addison, “MONDAY, July 19, 1714”, in The Spectator, number 569; republished in Alexander Chalmers, editor, The Spectator; a New Edition, [], volume VI, New York, N.Y.: D[aniel] Appleton & Company, 1853, OCLC 191120697:
      sips, drams, and whets
    • 1769, Elizabeth Raffald, The Experienced English Housekeeper
      To make a nice Whet before Dinner []
    • 1902, Robert Marshall Grade, The Haunted Major
      A really good game, to my mind, must have an element, however slight, of physical danger to the player. This is the great whet to skilled performance.

Anagrams[edit]


Middle English[edit]

Noun[edit]

whet

  1. Alternative form of whete

Yola[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English whete, from Old English hwǣte, from Proto-West Germanic *hwaitī.

Noun[edit]

whet

  1. wheat

References[edit]

  • Jacob Poole (1867), William Barnes, editor, A Glossary, With some Pieces of Verse, of the old Dialect of the English Colony in the Baronies of Forth and Bargy, County of Wexford, Ireland, London: J. Russell Smith, page 78