“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Richness of "Occupy"

From the Oxford English Dictionary (I used to work for these guys, I figure it's cool). 

The semantic richness is quite astounding, really. Possess, seize, have sex with, invest, fill, be busy with...

Etymology:  Irregularly < Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French occuper to take possession of, seize (1306), to fill a certain space (1314), to employ (c1360), to hold possession of (late 14th cent.), to inhabit (1530), to exercise (an employment) (1530), to fill time (1530), also reflexive, to busy oneself with (c1330) < classical Latin occupāre to seize (by force), take possession of, get hold of, to take up, fill, occupy (time or space), to employ, invest (money) < ob- ob- prefix + the same stem as capere to take, seize (see capture n.). Compare Italian occupare (a1294), Catalan ocupar (13th cent.), Portuguese ocupar (14th cent.), Spanish ocupar (1438).The ending of the English word has not been satisfactorily explained; compare Anglo-Norman occupier (late 14th cent. or earlier), which may however show the influence of the English word. Compare occupier n., which occurs earliest at the same date; it is unlikely that the -i- in the verb and the noun originates from the suffix -ier suffix.
Older Scots β. forms may show independent borrowing from or remodelling after French or Latin, or may arise by analogy with syncopated inflected forms such as (3rd singular present indicative) occupis , occupys , (past tense and past participle) occupit , occupyt , occupyd ; inflected forms indicating syncopation such as (3rd singular present indicative) ocupys , (past tense or past participle) occupyd , ocupid , occuped , occupede occur also in Middle English, alongside (much commoner) forms in -ie- or -ye- . Unambiguous examples of β. forms are very rare; compare:
1567    in J. Cranstoun Satirical Poems Reformation (1891) I. ii. 2   It is not aneuch ye pure King is deid, Bot ye mischant murtheraris occupand his steid.
1586    Burgh Court Perth 1 Nov.,   To flit & remoiff‥furth and fra [the] ȝeardis‥safar as they occupe thairof.
a1595    W. Cullen Chron. Aberdeen in J. Stuart Misc. Spalding Club (1842) II. 54   The craiftis men‥thinkand to ocupe marchandrise.
With sense 4 compare classical Latin occupāre pecūniam . With sense 8 compare classical Latin occupāre amplexū (Ovid Fasti 3. 509).
Throughout the 17th and most of the 18th cent., there seems to have been a general tendency to avoid this word, probably as a result of use of the word in sense 8. N.E.D. (1902    ) notes s.v.: ‘the disuse of this verb in the 17th and most of the 18th c. is notable. Against 194 quots. for 16th c., we have for 17th only 8, outside the Bible of 1611 (where it occurs 10 times), and for 18th c. only 10, all of its last 33 years. The verb occurs only twice (equivocally) in Shakes., is entirely absent from the Concordances to Milton and Pope, is not used by Gray; all Johnson's quots., except 2, are from the Bible of 1611. It was again freely used by Cowper (13 instances in Concordance). This avoidance appears to have been due to its vulgar employment in sense 8’; and compares the following two instances:
1600    Shakespeare Henry IV, Pt. 2 ii. iv. 142   A captaine? Gods light these villaines wil make the word as odious as the word occupy, which was an excellent good worde before it was il sorted.
a1637    B. Jonson De Stylo in Discov. (1640) 112   Many, out of their owne obscene Apprehensions, refuse proper and fit words; as occupie, nature, and the like.
I. To employ, make use of.


 1. trans. To keep busy, engage, employ (a person, or the mind, attention, etc.). Freq. in pass. Also refl.

a1325    Statutes of Realm in MS Rawl. B.520 f. 80,   For þe procrastinacion of þe askinde, he ne sal noȝt for iugen him þat is occupied.
a1382    Bible (Wycliffite, E.V.) (Bodl. 959) 2 Paralip. xxxv. 14   In þe offrynge of brent sacrifises & talewes vn to þe nyȝt þe preestis weryn occupied.
1429    in Norfolk Archaeol. (1904) 15 147   Ye tuisday we ocupyid us in ledyng of fyrris to ye ospital aforn.
a1464    J. Capgrave Abbreuiacion of Cron. (Cambr. G. IV. 12) (1983) 130   Many scoleres went away; þei þat abode were euel occupied.
1490    Caxton tr. Foure Sonnes of Aymon (1885) xxviii. 578   Many stones‥ynoughe for to ocupye at ones all the masons that were there.
a1500  (1413)    Pilgrimage of Soul (Egerton) i. xxi. f. 16v,   He hath‥occupied so my wittes with othir thinges.
1555    R. Eden tr. Peter Martyr of Angleria Decades of Newe Worlde iii. ix. f. 136v,   They occupyed them selues in the searchinge of particular tractes and coastes.
1568    Haddington Corr. 270   Traitouris, quhais lwnatick branes ar continewalie occupeit with this thair poysoun.
1604    E. Grimeston tr. J. de Acosta Nat. & Morall Hist. Indies iii. i. 117   Then shall he truly occupie himselfe in the studie of Philosophie.
1633    W. Prynne Histrio-mastix i. 628   That the minde‥might be‥occupied in the service of God, in recognizing his benefits.
1739    D. Hume Treat. Human Nature I. ii. 68   A man in a sound sleep, or strongly occupy'd with one thought, is insensible of time.
1782    W. Cowper Conversation in Poems 215   Whatever subject occupy discourse.
1860    J. Tyndall Glaciers of Alps i. xvi. 105,   I occupied myself with my instruments.
1875    B. Jowett tr. Plato Dialogues (ed. 2) I. 80   Every one who is occupied with public affairs.
1928    H. T. Lane Talks to Parents & Teachers 189   The citizens are occupied chiefly with earning a living.
1956    H. L. Mencken Minority Rep. 4   Some of them tried to occupy themselves by making various trivial gimcracks, but the majority simply sat with folded hands, staring into space.
1988    P. Grosskurth Melanie Klein ii. ii. 127   He seemed uninterested in what she was telling him, and gave her the impression that his mind was occupied elsewhere.



 a. trans. To employ oneself in, engage in, practise, perform; to follow or ply as one's business or occupation. Now arch. and rare.

?c1400    in Hist. & Antiq. Masonry 28   Hit is called Effraym, and there was sciens of Gemetry and masonri fyrst occupied.
1465    Paston Lett. (1904) II. 182   Leve wylfullnesse whyche men sey ye occupye to excessifly.
1498    in J. Stuart Extracts Council Reg. Aberdeen (1844) I. 67   That nane of thame [sc. craftsmen] occupy merchandice and thar craft togidder sa that, gif thai occupy the merchandice, that thai leif thar craft.
1535    Bible (Coverdale) Psalms cvi[i.] 23   They that go downe to the see in shippes, & occupie their busynesse in greate waters.
1578    J. Rolland Seuin Seages (1932) 5533   All his ingine and wit he did apply To leir phisick and the same occupy.
1581    W. Stafford Compend. Exam. Complaints (1876) ii. 48   Therefore men wil the gladder occupy husbandry.
1641    in W. Chambers Charters Burgh Peebles (1872) 105   That na‥persounes‥wha ar not burgessis [etc.]‥preswme to vsurpe exerce and occupie‥mercatis or vse of merchandice.
1660    in Rec. Early Hist. Boston (1877) II. 156   No person shall‥occupy any manufacture or science, till hee hath compleated 21 years of age.
1819    J. Burness Play 310   Gif he his trade would occupy, He might himself by that supply.
1909    Westm. Gaz. 9 July 4/2   The flycatchers and the warblers of several kinds, occupying their business by the water's edge.

b. intr. To be busy or employed (in some capacity); to exercise one's craft or function; to practise; to do business, to work. Obs.

1417    in M. Sellers York Memorandum Bk. (1912) I. I.182   If any man come fra other cites or tounes, and will occupy here in this cite in girdelercrafte als a maister, he sall pay at his first settyng up of his shoppe x s.
?1435    in C. L. Kingsford Chrons. London (1905) 56   Moneday was the Octaues off Seint Edward‥the which day the kyng wolde nat ocupye.
c1500  (1475)    Assembly of Gods (1896) 450   Ye seelyd my patent, Yeuyng me full power soo to occupy.
1576    in F. J. Furnivall Gild of St. Mary, Lichfield (1920) 27   Admytted‥to occupie as a master, Iourney-man, or servaunte within the said Cittie.
1618    N. Field Amends for Ladies i. i. sig. B3v,   I doe entertaine you, how doe you occupie?, what can you vse?
1653    T. Urquhart tr. Rabelais 1st Bk. Wks. vii,   The Seamsters (when the point of their needles was broken) began to work and occupie with the tail.
1847    J. P. Lawson Bk. Perth 171   Permitting their servants to occupy on the Sabbath-day, as well as on the rest of the week.



 a. trans. To make use of, use (a thing). Obs.

1423    in Archaeologia Cantiana (1880) 13 562   Payde to pyrs Sowthehowsyd for‥lyme that Joh. mabbe, tyler, occupijd.
1449    J. Metham Amoryus & Cleopes 1333   A sponfful off this confeccion he myght ocupy, Yt schuld porge him.
1483    Caxton tr. Caton B iij b,   In makyng and ocupyeng false dyse.
?1523    J. Fitzherbert Bk. Husbandrie §1   Than is the ploughe the moste necessaryest instrumente than an husbande can occupy.
1581    J. Marbeck Bk. of Notes 34   When the night is past‥why should we occupie anie longer a candle.
1597    in J. H. Macadam Baxter Bks. St. Andrews (1903) 34   That na‥owner of the saids backhousses suffer the samin to be occupyit vpon the said saboth day heerafter.
1774    C. Keith Farmer's Ha' in Har'st Rig (1801) 50   Lasses, occupy your wheel.

 b. intr. To make use of a thing. Obs. rare.

1558    W. Warde tr. ‘Alessio’ Secretes (1580) 52 b,   Occupie alwaies of this Sope, when you will washe your heade.
1558    W. Warde tr. ‘Alessio’ Secretes (1568) 94 b,   At every time that you wyll occupye of it, styrre it well.


 a. trans. To employ (money or capital) in trading; to lay out, invest, trade with; to deal in. Obs.

1465    J. Paston in Paston Lett. & Papers (2004) I. 137   Enquere what mony he hath reseyvid of the seid maner in my tyme, wherof the ferme is vj li. yerly, whech I suffird hym to occupie to his owne vse.
1526    W. Bonde Pylgrimage of Perfection ii. sig. Hviiiv,   This ryches he hath gyuen to vs as a stocke to occupy.
1560    J. Daus tr. J. Sleidane Commentaries f. cxviij,   He commaunded that the talentes receiued should be occupied that they might be made gainfull.
1581    J. Marbeck Bk. of Notes 1075   Wee be commaunded to occupie our Lords money, and not to hide it.
1602    W. Fulbecke Parallele or Conf. Law i. 29   If two Merchantes occupie their goods and merchandise in common to their common profite, the one of them may haue a writ of accompt against his companion.
1611    Bible (A.V.) Ezek. xxvii. 9   The ancients of Gebal, and the wise men thereof were in thee thy calkers, all the ships of the sea with their mariners were in thee, to occupie thy merchandise.
1773    Johnson Let. 17 May (1992) II. 32   Upon ten thousand pounds diligently occupied they may live in great plenty.


 b. intr. To trade, deal. Obs.

1525    Ld. Berners tr. J. Froissart Chron. II. cxi. [cvii.] 318   Berthaulte of Malygnes‥occupyeth to Damas, to Cayre, and to Alexandre.
1574    in T. S. Willan Stud. Elizabethan Foreign Trade (1959) 161   Merchantes to occupie and trafique into Barbarye.
1581    J. Marbeck Bk. of Notes 653   [He] gained much by occupieng with the Iewes and Christians.
1650    T. Fuller Pisgah-sight of Palestine ii. v. 129   Such as occupied in her Fairs with all precious stones.

 II. To be in, to take possession of.


 a. trans. To hold possession of; to have in one's possession or power; to hold (a position, office, or privilege). Also fig.In some contexts difficult to distinguish from sense 5b.

c1375    Chaucer Monk's Tale 3427   This kyng was slawe And Darius occupieth his degree.
c1400    J. Trevisa tr. R. Higden Polychron. (Tiber.) VII. 259   He huld and ocupyede þe archebyschopryche of Canturbury.
c1440  (1400)    Morte Arthure 98   Myne ancestres ware emperours.‥ They ocupyede þe empyre aughte score wynnttyrs.
?c1450  (1400)    Wyclif Eng. Wks. (1880) 384   As þe baron‥occupieþ & gouerneþ his baronrye.
a1500  (1425)    Metrical Life St. Robert of Knaresborough 1183   Graunt me grace‥to reul this place And sway to gouernn to my degre Þat I, all yff I simple be, Occupyes als presidentt By grace þat God here has me sentt.
1546    Stirling Archæol. Soc. (1905–6) 57   Elspet Tailȝor, the relict of Alexander Tailȝor, to occupy the fredome of that craft.
1560    J. Daus tr. J. Sleidane Commentaries f. ccclxxx,   You who occupie the chiefest places amongest the states of the Empire.
1602    W. Warner Epitome Hist. Eng. in Albions Eng. (rev. ed.) 355   The Pictes‥then occupying those parts which we now call the middle Marches, betwixt the English & Scots.
1755    B. Franklin Observ. conc. Increase Mankind 2 in W. Clarke Observ. French,   In countries full settled‥all Lands being occupied and improved to the Heighth; those who cannot get Land, must Labour for others that have it.
1785    W. Cowper Tirocinium in Task 414   Least qualified‥To occupy a sacred, awful post.
1845    M. Pattison in Christian Remembrancer Jan. 75   Gregory‥occupied the see of Tours twenty-three years.
1845    M. Pattison in Christian Remembrancer Jan. 78   The‥inferior Franks‥posted themselves, fully armed,‥under the portico, occupying all the entrances.
1883    Law Times 20 Oct. 410/2   A married woman is now to occupy the same position as her Saxon ancestress.
1910    Encycl. Brit. I. 1192   Allies was appointed secretary to the Catholic poor school committee in 1853, a position which he occupied till 1890.
1988    M. Blinkhorn Democracy & Civil War Spain 1931–9 (BNC) 10   Indalecio Prieto occupied the Finance ministry in the Provisional Government and later the Ministry of Public Works.

 b. trans. To live in and use (a place) as its tenant or regular inhabitant; to inhabit; to stay or lodge in.

a1387    J. Trevisa tr. R. Higden Polychron. (St. John's Cambr.) (1869) II. 155   Bretayne was somtyme occupied [L. Occupata] wiþ Saxons.
1449    in R. W. Chambers & M. Daunt Bk. London Eng. (1931) 124   Noon othir Brothirhodes nor Feleshepes to ocupye owre Halle nor noo part of owre place.
1489    Act 4 Hen. VII c. 19   If any such owner or owners‥take kepe & occupy any such house or houses & lands in his or their own hands.
1554    in J. D. Marwick Extracts Rec. Burgh Edinb. (1871) II. 193   Male‥of the hous now occupiit be the prouest.
1632    Cullen Town Council Minute Bk. 6 June,   Ane croft of land callit Sinclars croft occupeit be Alexander Reid.
1641    Termes de la Ley 107b,   Demaines‥be all the parts of any Manor which be not in the hands of freeholders of estate or inheritance, though they be occupied by Copiholders, Lessees for yeeres or for life, as well as tenant at will.
1742    H. Fielding Joseph Andrews I. ii. xiv. 267   He occupied a small piece of Land of his own, besides which he rented a considerable deal more.
1767    W. Blackstone Comm. Laws Eng. II. i. 7   By constantly occupying the same individual spot, the fruits of the earth were consumed.
1854    J. H. Newman Lect. Hist. Turks i. i. 2   This tract‥is at present occupied by civilized communities.
1881    J. Russell Haigs of Bemersyde 5   Bemersyde House‥has been occupied by the Haigs for more than seven centuries.
1926    D. H. Lawrence Plumed Serpent xvii. 281   The Bishop no longer occupied the great episcopal palace.
1960    C. Day Lewis Buried Day i. 16,   A photograph that after my mother's untimely death used to hang in dark corners or passages of the houses we occupied.
1988    A. Storr School of Genius iv. 44   Today, cells are designed for one prisoner have to be occupied by three.


c. intr. To hold possession or office; to dwell, reside; to stay, abide. Obs.

1413    in Sections Assembly Bk. A Shrewsbury Guild Hall 87   The stuwardes‥schall‥yef true and good accompts‥of all maner receyts‥bi theym reseyved‥duringe the tyme they have occupyed.
1413–19    in R. W. Chambers & M. Daunt Bk. London Eng. (1931) 225   These ben the Wronges, Iniuries‥which that Sir Richard [and others]‥that occupien for hym there han do to the kynges tenantz.
1483    Caxton tr. J. de Voragine Golden Legende 337/1   He‥ordeyned an holy man to occupye in his place.
1503–4    in J. B. Paul Accts. Treasurer Scotl. (1900) II. 418   For mail quhair the King occupiit in his innys‥lvj s.
1523    J. Fitzherbert Bk. Surueyeng Prol. sig. B2v,   The names of the lordes and tenauntes that occupy.
1535    Bible (Coverdale) Matt. xvii. 21   Whyle they occupied in Galile Iesus sayde vnto them [etc.].
1642    tr. J. Perkins Profitable Bk. (new ed.) i. §100. 44   An assignee is‥such a person who doth occupie in his own right; and a deputie such a person who doth occupie in the right of another.


a. trans. To take possession of, take for one's own use, seize. Also fig. Obs.

a1382    Bible (Wycliffite, E.V.) (Bodl. 959) 2 Kings xv. 14   Heeȝeþ to gon out lest par auenture, comynge, he ocupie vs & fulfille vp on vs fallynge.
?1387    T. Wimbledon Serm. (Corpus Cambr.) (1967) 92   Fre men he makeþ bonde, and bryngeþ forþ fals wittenesse, and occupieþ dede mennys þyngis, as þey shulde neuere dye.
1463    in S. Tymms Wills & Inventories Bury St. Edmunds (1850) 36,   I beqwethe to Thomas Heighaum the yonger my tablys of ivory.‥ And if he wil not ocupye hem I bequethe the seid tablees to‥his wyf.
1472–3    in J. Raine Testamenta Eboracensia (1865) III. 205   Thay occupy the mony to their awn use.
a1500  (1340)    R. Rolle Psalter (Univ. Oxf. 64) (1884) xvii. 6   Preoccupauerunt me laquei mortis‥bifore occupid has me the snares of ded.
1548    Hall's Vnion: Henry VII f. lx,   Also dyed‥the kynges chiefe chamberleyn, whose office Charles‥occupied and enioyed.
1553    J. Brende tr. Q. Curtius Rufus Hist. ix. f. 181,   Some occupied dartes, some speares, and other axes, and‥leaped to and fro their cartes.
1596    J. Dalrymple tr. J. Leslie Hist. Scotl. (1895) II. 462   Quhen the Catholickis war in sik penuritie‥the nobilitie occupieng thair gudes.
1614    W. Raleigh Hist. World i. v. i. §2. 317   Which done, they occupied the Citie, Lands, Goods, and Wiues, of those, whom they had murdered.


 b. trans. spec. To take possession of (a place), esp. by force; to take possession and hold of (a building).

a1382    Bible (Wycliffite, E.V.) (Bodl. 959) Judges vii. 24   Comeþ down in to aȝen-metyng of Madyan & occupieþ [a1425 L.V. ocupie ȝe; L. occupate] þe wateris vn to Bethhara & Jordan.
a1398    J. Trevisa tr. Bartholomaeus Anglicus De Proprietatibus Rerum (BL Add.) f. 190,   Sardus‥come oute of libea wiþ grete multitude and ocupied Sardinia and ȝaf þere to his owne name.
?a1425  (1350)    T. Castleford Chron. (1940) 19730   Þar famen þe north occupede.
1489  (1380)    J. Barbour Bruce i. 98   Throw his mycht till occupy Landis, þat war till him marcheand.
1516    R. Fabyan New Chron. Eng. (1811) v. xciv. 69   A Saxon named Ella‥slewe many Brytons,‥and after occupyed that Countre.
1548    Hall's Vnion: Henry VII f. xxvv,   That he would inuade or occupie the territory of hys enemies.
1596    J. Dalrymple tr. J. Leslie Hist. Scotl. (1895) II. 151   The Bischop sa iniuret, in a furie cumis til Edr, occupies the toune.
1609    J. Skene tr. Regiam Majestatem i. 8   To compeir, and answere‥vpon the principall pleie‥touching the lands vnjustlie occupied be him.
1788    Gibbon Decline & Fall I. v. 241   The heights had been occupied by the archers and slingers of the confederates.
1849    T. B. Macaulay Hist. Eng. II. x. 582   The Dutch had occupied Chelsea and Kensington.
1855    T. B. Macaulay Hist. Eng. IV. xviii. 205   Glencoe was to be occupied by troops.
1910    Encycl. Brit. I. 448/2   Aix‥was occupied by the Saracens in 731.
1961    H. MacLennan Seven Rivers Canada 28   The Canadian west would surely have been occupied by them‥had not the ancient rights of prior exploration‥bound the land to Canada.
1988    R. Christiansen Romantic Affirmities iv. 156   When Napoleon occupied Warsaw, Hoffman refused to take an oath of loyalty.


c. intr. To take possession. Obs.

c1475  (1445)    R. Pecock Donet 68   Ech man which haþ superflue goodis more þan is nede to occupie.
c1540  (1400)    Gest Historiale Destr. Troy 5329   My fos were so fell‥Þat þai occupiet ouer all, euyn as hom list.
1862    C. E. S. Norton Lady of La Garaye Prol.,   Creatures that dwell alone Occupy boldly.


 d. trans. To gain access to and remain in (a building, etc.) or on (a piece of land), without authority, as a form of protest.

1920    Times 2 Sept. 9/2   The men have occupied the works in those cases where the masters have declined to run the works at a loss.
1968    Newsweek 6 May 43/1   The university's Hamilton Hall was the first successful target of the revolutionaries, and it was seized and occupied Tuesday.
1996    China Post (Taipei, Taiwan) 1 May 1/5   About 400 protestors from the Yami aboriginal tribe occupied a loading pier over the weekend.


 7. trans. To take up, use up, fill (space, time, etc.); to be situated, stationed, or seated at or in, to be at or in (a place, position, etc.).

c1384    Bible (Wycliffite, E.V.) (Douce 369(2)) (1850) Luke xiii. 7   Kitt it doun, wherto occupieth it the erthe [L. terram occupat]?
c1395    Chaucer Squire's Tale 64   Thanne wolde it occupie a someres day.
?a1425    Gast of Guy (Rawl. Poet. 175) (1898) l. 578   Þe saule es gastly, and forþi It occupyes na stede bodily.
c1450  (1400)    Three Kings Cologne (Cambr. Ee.4.32) 26   Alle placys were ocupied with pilgrymes and oþir men.
1548    Hall's Vnion: Henry VII f. xiv,   Lyke a cypher in algorisme that is ioyned to no figure but onely occupieth a place.
?1566    J. Alday tr. P. Boaistuau Theatrum Mundi sig. S vij b,   If we should rehearse and declare all the singularities‥I should occupy a large volume.
1591  (1425)    Chester Plays (Huntington) 114   Marye‥harbour‥gett wee ne maye, for great lordes of stowte araye occupye this cyttye.
a1600  (1535)    W. Stewart tr. Boece Bk. Cron. Scotl. (1858) II. 719   My pen wald tyre‥To occupie so lang ane tyme and space.
1610    J. Guillim Display of Heraldrie ii. vii. 73   In the Crosse fimbriated the edges thereof doe occupie the least portion thereof.
1651    T. Hobbes Leviathan iii. xxxiv. 207   The Word Body‥signifieth that which‥occupyeth some certain room.
1749    H. Fielding Tom Jones IV. x. iv. 30   She placed her chair in such a posture, as almost to occupy the whole fire.
1761    D. Hume Hist. Eng. II. xxxvii. 308   The fencing against the pains and infirmities under which he laboured occupied a great part of his time.
1839    G. Bird Elements Nat. Philos. 369   The black cross disappearing, and leaving white spaces in the place it previously occupied.
1865    R. W. Dale Jewish Temple xvi. 173,   I shall not occupy your time with any description of the form of the sanctuary.
1875    B. Jowett tr. Plato Dialogues I. 399   The voyage‥has occupied thirty days.
1898    G. B. Shaw You never can Tell i. 208   Two persons just now occupying the room.
1954    I. Murdoch Under Net vii. 100   Hugo's flat occupied a corner position, and was skirted on the outside by a high parapet.
1964    F. Tuohy Ice Saints (1965) vii. 42   Every table at the café was occupied.
1988    A. N. Wilson Tolstoy Forewd. 1   The modern Soviet Union, like the Empire of Catherine the Great, occupies roughly one sixth of the world's surface.


 a. trans. To have sexual intercourse or relations with. Obs.

?a1475  (1425)    tr. R. Higden Polychron. (Harl.) (1871) III. 47   Men of Lacedemonia‥wery thro the compleyntes of theire wifes beenge at home, made a decre‥that thei scholde occupye [a1387(Trevisa), take; L. uti] mony men.
?1530    Dialogue Comen Secretary & Ielowsy xxii,   Suerly Her owne tayle she shulde occupy Somtyme for nede.
1546    J. Bale Actes Eng. Votaryes (1550) i. 56 b,   As king Edwine‥occupyed Alfgiua his concubine.
1598    J. Florio Worlde of Wordes,   Trentuno,‥a punishment inflicted by ruffianly fellowes uppon raskalie whores in Italy, who‥cause them to be occupide one and thirtie times by one and thirtie seuerall base raskalie companions.
1648    H. Hexham Groot Woorden-boeck,   Genooten, to Lie with, or to Occupie a woman.
1683    Last Will & Testament Charter of London 2   To Enjoy & Occupy all from the Bawd to the Whore downward.
1719    in T. D'Urfey Wit & Mirth V. 139   For she will be occupied when others they lay still.
1811    Lexicon Balatronicum,   Occupy, to occupy a woman, to have carnal knowledge of her.


 b. intr. To have sexual intercourse or relations; to cohabit. Obs.

c1520    in F. J. Furnivall R. Laneham's Let. (1871) Introd. 130   To make hyme [sc. your husband] lystear to occupye with youe.
1598    J. Florio Worlde of Wordes in J. S. Farmer & W. E. Henley Slang (1896) V. 86/2   A good wench, one that occupies freely.
1632    W. Rowley Woman never Vexed iii. i, in W. C. Hazlitt Dodsley's Sel. Coll. Old Eng. Plays (1875) XII. 137   Being partners, they did occupy long together before they were married.


1 comment:

the guava tree said...

long-time reader of your blog. Led me to pine for the days when I had free online access to the OED and to write this response to the strange history of this word