mummy

mummy
\ \ English has two words mummy. The one meaning ‘mother’ [19], although not recorded in print until comparatively recently, is one of a range of colloquial ‘mother’-words, such as mama and mammy, that go back ultimately to the syllable ma, imitative of a suckling baby (see MAMMAL and MOTHER), and was probably common in dialect speech much earlier. The 19th century saw its adoption into the general language. The abbreviation mum [19] has a parallel history.
\ \ The Egyptian mummy [14] comes ultimately from Arabic mūmiyāembalmed body’, a derivative of mūmembalming wax’, but when it first arrived in English (via medieval Latin mumia and Old French mumie) it was used for a ‘medicinal ointment prepared from mummified bodies’ (‘Take myrrh, sarcocol [a gum-resin], and mummy … and lay it on the nucha [spinal cord]’, Lanfranc’s Science of Cirurgie, c. 1400).
\ \ The word’s original sense ‘embalmed body’ did not emerge in English until the early 17th century.
\ \ Cf.MAMA, MAMMY

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • Mummy — Mum my (m[u^]m m[y^]), n.; pl. {Mummies} (m[u^]m m[i^]z). [F. momie; cf. Sp. & Pg. momia, It. mummia; all fr. Per. m[=u]miy[=a], fr. m[=u]m wax.] 1. A dead body embalmed and dried after the manner of the ancient Egyptians; also, a body preserved …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Mummy & Me — Directed by Jithu Joseph Produced by Jithin Arts Starring …   Wikipedia

  • mummy — mummy1 [mum′ē] n. pl. mummies [Fr momie < ML mumia < Ar mūmiyāʾ, embalmed body, mummy < Pers mum, wax] 1. a dead body preserved by embalming, as by the ancient Egyptians 2. any dead body that has been naturally well preserved 3. any thin …   English World dictionary

  • mummy — Ⅰ. mummy [1] ► NOUN (pl. mummies) Brit. informal ▪ one s mother. ORIGIN perhaps an alteration of earlier MAMMY(Cf. ↑M). Ⅱ. mummy [2] ► …   English terms dictionary

  • Mummy — Mum my, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Mummied}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Mummying}.] To embalm; to mummify. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Mummy — For other uses, see Mummy (disambiguation). An Egyptian mummy kept in the Vatican Museums. A mummy is a body, human or animal, whose skin and organs have been preserved by either intentional or incidental exposure to chemicals, extreme coldness… …   Wikipedia

  • mummy — mummy1 /mum ee/, n., pl. mummies, v., mummied, mummying. n. 1. the dead body of a human being or animal preserved by the ancient Egyptian process or some similar method of embalming. 2. a dead body dried and preserved by nature. 3. a withered or… …   Universalium

  • mummy — [[t]mʌ̱mi[/t]] mummies 1) N FAMILY Some people, especially young children, call their mother mummy. [BRIT, INFORMAL] I want my mummy... Mummy, I m tired!... Mummy says I can play out in the garden. (in AM, use mommy) 2) N COUNT A mummy is a dead… …   English dictionary

  • mummy —    A word used by young children to their mother. Boys usually stop using this form by the age of twelve or so, though usage varies with each family. Girls, especially middle class girls, are likely to continue using it much longer. Examples of… …   A dictionary of epithets and terms of address

  • mummy — {{11}}mummy (n.1) c.1400, medicine prepared from mummy tissue, from M.L. mumia, from Arabic mumiyah embalmed body, from Pers. mumiya asphalt, from mum wax. Sense of embalmed body first recorded in English 1610s. Mummy wheat (1842) was said to be… …   Etymology dictionary

  • mummy — I. noun (plural mummies) Etymology: Middle English mummie powdered parts of a mummified body used as a drug, from Anglo French mumie, from Medieval Latin mumia mummy, powdered mummy, from Arabic mūmiya bitumen, mummy, from Persian mūm wax Date:… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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