to boot


2 [boot]
Archaic. something given into the bargain.
remedy; relief; help.
verb (used without object), verb (used with object)
Archaic. to be of profit, advantage, or avail (to): It boots thee not to complain.
to boot, in addition; besides: We received an extra week's pay to boot.

before 1000; Middle English bote, Old English bōt advantage; cognate with Dutch boete, German Busse, Old Norse bōt, Gothic bota; see bet, better1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
boot1 (buːt)
1.  chukka boot top boot Wellington boots See also surgical boot a strong outer covering for the foot; shoe that extends above the ankle, often to the knee
2.  US and Canadian name: trunk an enclosed compartment of a car for holding luggage, etc, usually at the rear
3.  a protective covering over a mechanical device, such as a rubber sheath protecting a coupling joining two shafts
4.  (US), (Canadian) a rubber patch used to repair a puncture in a tyre
5.  an instrument of torture used to crush the foot and lower leg
6.  a protective covering for the lower leg of a horse
7.  a kick: he gave the door a boot
8.  slang (Brit) an ugly person (esp in the phrase old boot)
9.  slang (US) a navy or marine recruit, esp one in training
10.  computing short for bootstrap
11.  bet one's boots to be certain: you can bet your boots he'll come
12.  See boots and all
13.  die with one's boots on
 a.  to die while still active
 b.  to die in battle
14.  lick the boots of to be servile, obsequious, or flattering towards
15.  slang put the boot in
 a.  to kick a person, esp when he or she is already down
 b.  to harass someone or aggravate a problem
 c.  to finish off (something) with unnecessary brutality
16.  slang the boot dismissal from employment; the sack
17.  the boot is on the other foot, the boot is on the other leg the situation is or has now reversed
18.  too big for one's boots self-important or conceited
19.  (tr) (esp in football) to kick
20.  (tr) to equip with boots
21.  informal (tr)
 a.  (often foll by out) to eject forcibly
 b.  to dismiss from employment
22.  Also boot up. to start up the operating system of (a computer) or (of a computer) to begin operating
[C14 bote, from Old French, of uncertain origin]

boot2 (buːt)
1.  archaic to be of advantage or use to (a person): what boots it to complain?
2.  obsolete an advantage
3.  dialect something given in addition, esp to equalize an exchange: a ten pound boot to settle the bargain
4.  to boot as well; in addition: it's cold and musty, and damp to boot
[Old English bōt compensation; related to Old Norse bōt remedy, Gothic bōta, Old High German buoza improvement]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

"footwear," early 14c., from O.Fr. bote "boot" (12c.), with corresponding words in Prov. and Sp., of unknown origin, perhaps from a Gmc. source. Originally for riding boots only. The verb meaning "kick" is Amer.Eng. 1877; that of "eject" is from 1880.

"profit, use," O.E. bot "help, relief, advantage; atonement," lit. "a making better," from P.Gmc. *boto (see better). Cf. Ger. Buße "penance, atonement," Goth. botha "advantage." Now mostly in phrase to boot (O.E. to bote).

"start up a computer," 1975, from bootstrap (n.), 1953, "fixed sequence of instructions to load the operating system of a computer," on notion of the first-loaded program pulling itself, and the rest, up by the bootstraps.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

to boot

Besides, in addition. For example, It rained every day and it was cold to boot, or He said they'd lower the price of the car by $1,000 and throw in air conditioning to boot. This expression has nothing to do with footwear. Boot here is an archaic noun meaning "advantage," and in the idiom has been broadened to include anything additional, good or bad. [c. a.d. 1000]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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