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Yours, Etc.: Origins and Uses of 8 Sign-Offs

yes

[yes] /yɛs/
adverb
1.
(used to express affirmation or assent or to mark the addition of something emphasizing and amplifying a previous statement):
Do you want that? Yes, I do.
2.
(used to express an emphatic contradiction of a previously negative statement or command):
Don't do that! Oh, yes I will!
3.
(used, usually interrogatively, to express hesitation, uncertainty, curiosity, etc.):
“Yes?” he said as he opened the door. That was a marvelous show! Yes?
4.
(used to express polite or minimal interest or attention.)
noun, plural yeses.
5.
an affirmative reply.
verb (used with object), yessed, yessing.
6.
to give an affirmative reply to; give assent or approval to.
interjection
7.
(used as a strong expression of joy, pleasure, or approval.)
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English yes, yis, Old English gēse (adv. and noun), probably equivalent to gēa yea + be it (present subjunctive singular of bēon to be)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for yesses

yes

/jɛs/
sentence substitute
1.
used to express acknowledgment, affirmation, consent, agreement, or approval or to answer when one is addressed
2.
used, often with interrogative intonation, to signal someone to speak or keep speaking, enter a room, or do something
noun
3.
an answer or vote of yes
4.
(often pl) a person who votes in the affirmative
Compare no1
Word Origin
Old English gēse, from iā sīe may it be; see yea
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for yesses

yes

Old English gise, gese "so be it!," probably from gea, ge "so" (see yea) + si "be it!," third person imperative of beon "to be" (see be). Originally stronger than simple yea. Used in Shakespeare mainly as an answer to negative questions. Yes-man is first recorded 1912, American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for yesses

9
8
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