Online Encyclopedia

WAIST

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V28, Page 246 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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WAIST, the middle part of the human body, the portion lying between the ribs and the hip-bones, comprising the compressible parts of the trunk. The word is also applied to the central portion of other objects, particularly tc the narrowest portion of musical instruments of the violin type and to the centre of a ship. The word appears in the M. Eng. as waste, " waste of a mannys' myddel " (Prompt. parv. c. 1440), and is developed from the O. Eng. wcestm, growth, the " waist " being the part where the growth of a man is shown and developed; cf. Icel. voxtr, stature, shape; Dan. vaext, size, growth, &c. It is thus to be derived from the 0. Eng. weaxan, to grow, wax.
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MORRISON REMICK WAITE (1816–1888)

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