Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The point at which something comes into existence or from which it derives or is derived.
  • noun Ancestry.
  • noun The fact of originating; rise or derivation.
  • noun Anatomy The point of attachment of a muscle that remains relatively fixed during contraction.
  • noun Mathematics The point of intersection of coordinate axes, as in the Cartesian coordinate system.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To give rise to; originate; initiate.
  • To arise; originate.
  • noun Beginning of existence; rise or first manifestation; first stage or indication of being or existence.
  • noun That from which anything derives its being or nature; source of being or existence; cause or occasion; fountain; source: as, the origins of a nation.
  • noun Hence, parentage; ancestry; pedigree; extraction; birth.
  • noun In mathematics, the fixed starting-point from which measurement or motion starts; specifically, in analytical geometry, the point from which the coördinates are measured.
  • noun In anatomy: The proximal, larger, or more fixed one of the two ends or attachments of a muscle; the part or place whence a muscle usually acts: opposed to insertion.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The first existence or beginning of anything; the birth.
  • noun That from which anything primarily proceeds; the fountain; the spring; the cause; the occasion.
  • noun (Anat.) The point of attachment or end of a muscle which is fixed during contraction; -- in contradistinction to insertion.
  • noun (Math.) the point where the axes intersect. See Note under Ordinate.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The beginning of something.
  • noun The source of a river, information, goods, etc.
  • noun mathematics The point at which the axes of a coordinate system intersect
  • noun anatomy The proximal end of attachment of a muscle to a bone that will not be moved by the action of that muscle.
  • noun cartography an arbitrary point on the earth's surface, chosen as the zero for a system of coordinates.
  • noun in the plural ancestry

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun the place where something begins, where it springs into being
  • noun the point of intersection of coordinate axes; where the values of the coordinates are all zero
  • noun the descendants of one individual
  • noun an event that is a beginning; a first part or stage of subsequent events
  • noun properties attributable to your ancestry
  • noun the source of something's existence or from which it derives or is derived

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English origine, ancestry, from Latin orīgō, orīgin-, from orīrī, to arise, be born; see er- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English origine, from Latin origo ("beginning, source, birth, origin"), from oriri ("to rise"); see orient.

Examples

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