Staff O of the English Wordbook.

Basic abbreviations:

  • OE=Old English
  • NHG=New High German
  • Du.=Dutch

For a full list of etymological and other abbreviations used in these wordlists, see: Offshortenings.


Chancery English Class Anglish/English
Attested Unattested
obedient adj hearsome, law-abiding bowel (<OE beogol)
obedience n hearsomeness -
obelisk n needle, shaft stonerock (<OE stanrocc)
obese adj full, podgy, overweight -
obey vb heed, fulfill, follow, bow, give in, give way, meet -
obfuscate vb becloud, muddy -
object n ware, thing, mark, body, goal, end
objection n gripe -
objectionable adj - frainworthy
objective n/adj goal, target; fair-minded, open-minded unonesided
objectivity n open-mindedness, evenhandedness unsidedness
obligate vb bind, make -
obligation n binding, making needyness/neediness (<OE néadignes)
obliged adj bound -
oblique adj slanting, sideways -
obliquely adv aslant athwart
oblivion n forgetfullness, unawareness forgottenhood
oblivious adj clueless, careles, heedless, unwitted -
obscene adj foul, lewd, shameless -
obscure vb darken, bedim, befog, overmist, overshadow thester
obscure adj thester, dim, unlit, swart, overmisted, shady unswotel
obsequious adj cringing, beggarly, bootlicking, brownnosing, fawning, groveling, sniveling, spineless -
observant adj awake, open-eyed yeming
observe vb follow, goose-step; eye, behold, catch, mark, look at, witness; mind, watch, keep an eye on

yeme (<OE gieman), umwlote (<OE ymbwlātian)

Beaughten (<NHG. beachten) see aught

observer n witness, onlooker, beholder -
obsess vb grip -
obsolete adj outworn, rust, timeworn out of brook
forold (cf. Dn. forældet/NHG. veraltet)
obstacle n block, hurdle -
obstinate adj headstrong, willful, steadfast -
obstetrics n - birthcarelore
obstruct vb block, fetter, hamstring, shackle, hold up forslow, forset (<OE forsettan)
obstruction n hindering, hinderness, hitch -
obtain vb get, reap, win, net, come by, draw, land  fang, beget
obvious adj straightforward bare-nebbed, swotel
obviously adv - markedly

opensightly (cf. NHG offensichtlich)

Óðinn/Odin n Weden, Woden
occasion n time; opening sele (<OE sæl), meal
occasional adj here and far between -
occasionally adv here and there, now and then -
occidental n/adj western -
occupied adj busy, tied-up beseted (cf. Du bezet, NHG besetzt)
occupy vb - beset (cf. Du bezetten, NHG besetzten)
occur vb happen, befall, come about, sheon (<OE sceon)


occurrence n happening, befall asheon (<OE ġescēon, cf. NHG Geschehen)
ocean n mere highsea, worldwater, the blue moor, the floatway, sailroad, the bree, the brine, the foam;

highsea, fivelway (<OE fifelwæġ), whaleway (<OE hwælweġ, "sea")

haff (<OE heaf "sea, ocean")

octagon n - eightside
October n - Winterfulth
octopus n - armfish, eightfoot (calque from Greek), inkfish (calque from German)
odds n

likelihood; at odds: out of step

odour n smell, stench duft
oenophilia n - winelust
oesophagus n - kiteway
offend vb smite, upset, gall, wound grill, shend
offer vb/n n: bid

vb: bequeath, agive

offering n gift, handout -
office n - ambight (calque)
officer n beadle, sheriff ambighter
official n/adj. steward, sheriff, reeve; acknowledged -
oil n/vb slick, wax, fat lime, fattybree
ointment n salve -
okay adj all right -
old fashioned adj stick-in-the-mud, old time, old world, old line -
Old Testament n - Old Bond, Lawsetness (OE ǽgesetnes)
oleaginous adj fatty limy
olfactory adj smell -
-ology sfx -lore -
omen n boding, foreshadowing, token, warning, straw in the wind, writing on the wall foretoken
ominous adj doomy, ill-boding, threatening -
omit vb leave out, drop underlet (cf. NHG unterlassen)

outlet (cf. NHG auslassen; pron. out-LET)

waylet (cf. Du. weglaten)

omnipotent adj almighty -
omniscient adj all-knowing -
onomatopoeia n - hearword, din-aping / clang-aping (calque of german Schallnachahmung) wordmaking (calque of the greek onoma "word, name" + poiein "compose, make"), loudwork / dinwork (calque of german Lautmalerei)
onion n - ramson, cipe(<OE cípe) ramps (<OE hramsa)
operate vb work, run

medical: sithe

bedrive (cf. NHG betreiben)

operation n - medical: sithing

military/police: undertaking

opinion n thought, think-so, wen (<OE)
opponent n witherling -
opportune adj timely, well-timed haply (<OE gehæplice)
opportunity n opening -
oppose vb be against, buck, withstand; fight hild, sake (<OE sacan)
opposite n - gainmatch, witherdeal
opposite adj withering overright (Dorset), athwart (with object), fornent (Northern)
opposition n withstander gainstanders, witherers
oppressed adj downtrodden -
oppress n - ahevy (<OE āhefigan), athryck (<OE āthryccan), offthryck (<OE ofþryccan), fortheen (<OE forþēon), smate (<OE ġesmætean), thrysm (<OE ġeþrysmian), hool (<OE hōlian), oversyme (<OE ofersȳman), swear (<OE swæran)
oppression n -

thryckness (<OE þrycnes) pl: thrycknesse (<OE þrycnessa), offthryckness (<OE ofþrycnes) pl: offthrycknesse (<OE ofþrycnessa), offthryckedness (<OE ofþryccednes) pl: offthryckednesse (<OE ofþryccednessa)

obrium n shame -
optimum adj best -
optimism n yaysaying, hopethinking -
optimist n yaysayer, hopethinker -
optional adj - corely
oracle n - godspeaker (<OE godspræce)
oral adj uttered; unwritten, spoken
orange adj - fall, yellowred (<OE geoluhread)
orange adj - midrikeberry / chinaberry (cf. Du. sinaasappel)
orangutan n - redape
oratory n openspeechcraft, open speaking
orbit vb/n turn spor (cf. Ic. sporbraut)
orchestra n - swaygathering
orchid n - ballockwort (<ME beallocwirt)
ordain vb doom; call tee (<OE teon)
order n


command: behest

group: board, brotherhood, fellowship

char: breed, feather, ilk, kind

fettle, kilter

fading (<OE fadian) 

command: befeal (<ME befelen, OE befēolan, cf. NHG Befehl)

order vb bespeak, bid

bebid (<OE bebod), behight (<OE behatan)

befeal (<OE befēolan, cf. Du bevelen), behest

arrange: fade

orderly adj smooth, well-run, shipshape, trim, spotless -
ordination n - hoding (<OE hádung)
organ n book; means, tool workern (calque)
organization n board, brotherhood, fellowship, body shiplaying (cf Ic. skipuleggja)
organize vb - stight, shiplay
oriental adj eastern -
orifice n hole, mouth, opening -
origin n root, wellspring, beginning, birth, stem,

Ord (Eng. but seldom)
upspring (<OE), andstanding (cf. NHG Entstehung), wyrtrum (<OE) pl: wyrtrummas (<OE wyrtrumas)

cause: frume (<OE fruma)

original adj first, new, fresh ordly
original n firstling -
originally adv at first ur-/orspringly (<NHG. ursprünglich) (see ur- / or- )
originate vb stem, arise, andstand (cf. NHG entstehen)

upspring (Eng.)

ornament n -

freatwing (<OE frætwung), gleng/gling (<OE gleng)

moon-shaped: live (<OE hlīfa)

ornament vb bedeck, deck, trim -
ornamentation n setoff, trim -
ornithology n - birdlore
orthodox adj mainstream; by-the-book liefful (<OE léafful)
osteology n - bonelore
osteoporosis n - bone brittleing
ostrich n - strutter (<OE stryta)
outcry n uproar -
outdated n outworn, rusty -
outmanoeuvre vb outsmart, outshine, outwit -
outperform vb outdo, outshine -
oval n - eggshape
overbalance vb slip, tumble, lose your footing; upset, keel over
overcharge vb overload, overweigh -
overemphasize vb overplay, overshow -
ovum n - eggling
oxygen n breath of life sourstuff, breathloft
oxymoron n - sharpdull (calque)
oyster n clam -

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