AskDefine | Define was

Dictionary Definition

was See be

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

From wæs, *wêsôn, cognate with German war < *wes- "to reside". The paradigm of "to be" has been since the time of Proto-Germanic a synthesis of three originally distinct verb stems. The infinitive form "to be" is from Proto-Indo-European *bHeu- "to become". The words "is" and "are" are both derived from Proto-Indo-European *h1es- "to be". Lastly, the past forms starting with "w-" such as "was" and "were" are from Proto-Indo-European *wes- "to reside".

Pronunciation

stressed
  • a UK , /wɒz/, /wQz/
  • a US , /wʌz/, /wVz/
  • Rhymes with: -ɒz
unstressed
  • , /wəz/, /w@z/
  • (in the phrase "I was there")

Verb

was
  1. First-person singular simple past tense indicative of be.
  2. Third-person singular simple past tense indicative of be.

Anagrams

See also

Dutch

Etymology 1

cognate with wash

Noun

  1. laundry, clothes that need to be washed, or just have been washed.

Verb

was
  1. Present tense singular 1st person of wassen (meaning to wash).

Derived terms

Etymology 2

cognate with wax

Noun

was
  1. wax, what bees produce to make their housing from.
  2. growth, increasing in size and/or volume.

Verb

was
  1. Present tense singular 1st person of wassen (another meaning is to grow).

Etymology 3

cognate with was

Verb

was
  1. Past tense singular of zijn/wezen.

German

Etymology

(h)waz, originally *(h)wat, compare Dutch wat.

Pronunciation

Pronoun

was

Derived terms

Polish

Pronoun

was
  1. Genitive, accusative and locative of wy (you, plural).

Scots

Noun

  1. Plural of wa

Extensive Definition

Was ("power") scepters do represent the Set-animal (the Egyptian god Sutekh). Was scepters were carried by gods, pharaohs, and priests, as a symbol of power, and in later use, control over the force of chaos (Set). The head and forked tail of the Set-animal are clearly present. Was scepters are often depicted in paintings, drawings, and carvings of gods, and remnants of real Was scepters have been found constructed of faience or wood.
The Was (''
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