What is the X in X-mas?
Old English hoppian "to spring, leap, dance," from Proto-Germanic *hupnojanan (cf. Old Norse hoppa, Dutch huppen, German hüpfen "to hop"). Related: Hopped; hopping.
usually hops, type of twining vine whose cones are used in brewing, etc., mid-15c., from Middle Dutch hoppe, from Proto-Germanic *hup-nan- (cf. Old Saxon -hoppo, German Hopfen), of unknown origin.
"opium," 1887, from Cantonese nga-pin (pronounced HAH-peen) "opium," a Chinese folk etymology of the English word opium, literally "crow peelings." Re-folk-etymologized back into English by association with hop (n.1).
"a small jump," c.1500, from hop (v.). Slang sense of "informal dancing party" is from 1731 (defined by Johnson as "a place where meaner people dance"). Meaning "short flight on an aircraft" is from 1909.
Beer (1930+)Related Terms
: a hop fiend/ hop dreamnoun
[fr a shortening of Cantonese Chinese nga pin, pronounced HAH peen, ''opium,'' literally ''crow peelings,'' a Chinese folk etymology for English opium; in a subsequent US folk etymology this was changed to hop by assimilation with the plant used to make beer, with its suggestions of intoxication]