\ \ [OE] Despite the passing similarity, errand has no etymological connection with err and error. It comes from a prehistoric Germanic *ǣrundjam, which meant ‘message’ – a sense which in fact survived in English until as recently as the 18th century (Miles Coverdale, for example, in his 1535 translation of 1 Samuel 11:5 wrote ‘So they told him the errand of the men of Jabesh’ – where the Authorized Version has ‘tidings’). The main modern meaning, ‘task one goes to perform’, developed in the 13th century (in American English it has latterly gained specific connotations of ‘shopping’). The source of the Germanic word is not known, but it is no doubt related to Swedish ärende and Danish ærindeerrand, message, business’.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • Errand — Er rand, n. [OE. erende, erande, message, business, AS. [ae]rende, [ae]rend; akin to OS. arundi, OHG. arunti, Icel. eyrendi, [ o]rendi, erendi, Sw. [ a]rende, Dan. [ae]rende; perh. akin to AS. earu swift, Icel. [ o]rr, and to L. oriri to rise, E …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Errand — Single par Faylan extrait de l’album Polaris Face A Errand Face B Scat Blue Sortie 27 janvier 2010 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • errand — ► NOUN ▪ a short journey made to deliver or collect something, especially on someone else s behalf. ● errand of mercy Cf. ↑errand of mercy ORIGIN Old English, «message, mission» …   English terms dictionary

  • errand — index burden, mission Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • errand — O.E. ærende message, mission; answer, news, tidings, from P.Gmc. *ærundjam (Cf. O.S. arundi, O.N. erendi, Dan. ærende, Swed. ärende, O.Fris. erende, O.H.G. arunti message ). Originally of important missions; meaning short, simple journey and task …   Etymology dictionary

  • errand — [n] task assignment, charge, commission, duty, job, message, mission; concept 362 …   New thesaurus

  • errand — [er′ənd] n. [ME erende < OE ærende, message, mission, news, lit., that delivered by messenger < base of ar, messenger; akin to OS ārundi, OHG ārunti] 1. a trip to carry a message or do a definite thing, often esp. for someone else 2. the… …   English World dictionary

  • errand — n. 1) to do, run an errand; to go on an errand 2) personal errands 3) a fool s ( useless ) errand 4) an errand for (could you run an errand for me?) 5) (misc.) an errand of mercy * * * [ erənd] run an errand to go on an errand (misc.) an errand… …   Combinatory dictionary

  • errand — [[t]e̱rənd[/t]] errands 1) N COUNT An errand is a short trip that you make in order to do a job for someone, for example when you go to a shop to buy something for them. She went off on some errand... She had a more urgent errand. 2) PHRASE: V… …   English dictionary

  • errand — noun (C) 1 a short journey in order to do something for someone, for example delivering or getting something for them: I have a couple of errands for you. | send sb on an errand: His mother sent him on an errand. | run an errand: Uncle Pio has… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • errand — UK [ˈerənd] / US noun [countable] Word forms errand : singular errand plural errands a small job that involves going to collect or deliver something I m about to send Tom out on an errand. run an errand (= do an errand): She s out running errands …   English dictionary

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