Meaning of ROOT in English

I. ˈrüt, ˈru̇t noun

Usage: often attributive

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English rōt, from Old Norse; akin to Old English wyrt root, Latin radix, Greek rhiza

Date: 12th century


a. : the usually underground part of a seed plant body that originates usually from the hypocotyl, functions as an organ of absorption, aeration, and food storage or as a means of anchorage and support, and differs from a stem especially in lacking nodes, buds, and leaves

b. : any subterranean plant part (as a true root or a bulb, tuber, rootstock, or other modified stem) especially when fleshy and edible


a. : the part of a tooth within the socket ; also : any of the processes into which this part is often divided — see tooth illustration

b. : the enlarged basal part of a hair within the skin

c. : the proximal end of a nerve

d. : the part of an organ or physical structure by which it is attached to the body

the root of the tongue


a. : something that is an origin or source (as of a condition or quality)

the love of money is the root of all evil — 1 Timothy 6:10 (Authorized Version)

b. : one or more progenitors of a group of descendants — usually used in plural

c. : an underlying support : basis

d. : the essential core : heart — often used in the phrase at root

e. : close relationship with an environment : tie — usually used in plural

they put down root s in a farming community


a. : a quantity taken an indicated number of times as an equal factor

2 is a fourth root of 16

b. : a number that reduces an equation to an identity when it is substituted for one variable


a. : the lower part : base

b. : the part by which an object is attached to something else

6. : the simple element inferred as the basis from which a word is derived by phonetic change or by extension (as composition or the addition of an affix or inflectional ending)

7. : the lowest tone of a chord (as C in a C minor chord) when the tones are arranged in ascending thirds

Synonyms: see origin

• root·ed ˈrü-təd, ˈru̇- adjective

• root·ed·ness noun

• root·less ˈrüt-ləs, ˈru̇t- adjective

• root·less·ness noun

• root·like -ˌlīk adjective

II. verb

Date: 14th century

transitive verb


a. : to furnish with or enable to develop roots

b. : to fix or implant by or as if by roots

2. : to remove altogether by or as if by pulling out by the roots — usually used with out

root out dissenters

intransitive verb

1. : to grow roots or take root

2. : to have an origin or base

III. verb

Etymology: alteration of wroot, from Middle English wroten, from Old English wrōtan; akin to Old High German ruozzan to root

Date: 1532

intransitive verb

1. : to turn up or dig in the earth with the snout : grub

2. : to poke or dig about

transitive verb

: to turn over, dig up, or discover and bring to light — usually used with out

root out the cause of the problem

IV. ˈrüt also ˈru̇t intransitive verb

Etymology: perhaps alteration of rout (II)

Date: 1889

1. : to noisily applaud or encourage a contestant or team : cheer

2. : to wish the success of or lend support to someone or something

• root·er noun

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.