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boot 1 (bt)
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n.
1. A durable covering for the foot and part or much of the leg, usually made of leather, fabric, plastic, or rubber.
2. A protective covering, especially a sheath to enclose the base of a floor-mounted gear shift lever in a car or truck.
3. Chiefly British An automobile trunk.
4.
a. A kick.
b. Slang An unceremonious dismissal, as from a job. Used with the.
c. Slang A swift, pleasurable feeling; a thrill.
5. A Denver boot.
6. A marine or navy recruit in basic training.
7. Computers The process of starting or restarting a computer.
8. boots An instrument of torture, used to crush the foot and leg.
tr.v. boot·ed, boot·ing, boots
1. To put boots on.
2. To kick: booted the ball into the goal.
3. Slang To discharge unceremoniously. See Synonyms at dismiss.
4. Computers To start (a computer) by loading an operating system from a disk.
5. To disable (a vehicle) by attaching a Denver boot.
6. Baseball To misplay (a ground ball).
Idiom:
boots on the ground
1. Soldiers actively serving in a conflict zone: attempted to win the war with airstrikes rather than with boots on the ground.
2. Personnel actively engaging in an effort at a fundamental level: failed to mobilize enough boots on the ground to win the election.

[Middle English bote, from Old French.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
boot 2 (bt)
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intr.v. boot·ed, boot·ing, boots
To be of help or advantage; avail.
n.
1. Chiefly Southern & Midland US See lagniappe.
2. Archaic Advantage; avail.
Idiom:
to boot
In addition; besides: The new cruise ship was not only the biggest in the world, but the fastest to boot.

[Middle English boten, to be of help, from Old English bōtian, from bōt, help; see bhad- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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