{{11}}limber (adj.) "pliant, flexible," 1560s, of uncertain origin, possibly from LIMB (Cf. limb) (n.1) on notion of supple boughs of a tree [Barnhart], or from limp "flaccid" [Skeat], or somehow from M.E. lymer "shaft of a cart" (see LIMBER (Cf. limber) (n.)), but the late appearance of the -b- in that word argues against it. Related: Limberness. Dryden used limber-ham (see HAM (Cf. ham) (n.1) in the "joint" sense) as a name for a character "perswaded by what is last said to him, and changing next word."
{{12}}limber (n.) "detachable forepart of a gun carriage," 1620s, from M.E. lymer (early 15c.), earlier lymon (c.1400), probably from O.Fr. limon "shaft," a word perhaps of Celtic origin, or possibly from Germanic and related to LIMB (Cf. limb) (n.1). Hence, limber (v.) "to attach a limber to a gun" (1843). Cf. related Sp. limon "shaft," leman "helmsman."
{{12}}limber (v.) 1748, from LIMBER (Cf. limber) (adj.). Related: Limbered; limbering.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.


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  • Limber — Lim ber (l[i^]m b[ e]r), n. [For limmer, Icel. limar branches, boughs, pl. of lim; akin to E. limb. See {Limb} a branch.] 1. pl. The shafts or thills of a wagon or carriage. [Prov. Eng.] [1913 Webster] 2. (Mil.) The detachable fore part of a gun… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Limber — Lim ber v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Limbered} (l[i^]m b[ e]rd); p. pr. & vb. n. {Limbering}.] (Mil.) To attach to the limber; as, to limber a gun. [1913 Webster] {To limber up}, to change a gun carriage into a four wheeled vehicle by attaching the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Limber — may refer to:*Limbers and caissons (military), a 2 way cart used to support artilery *Limber Pine, a species of pine tree found in the Western United States and Canada *Limber Perez, a Honduran football player *Limber Hill Transmitter, a relay… …   Wikipedia

  • limber — limber1 [lim′bər] adj. [< ? LIMB1] 1. easily bent; flexible; pliant 2. able to bend the body easily; supple; lithe vt. to make limber [to limber the fingers] vi. to make oneself limber, as by exercises: usually with up limberness …   English World dictionary

  • limber — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ supple; flexible. ► VERB (limber up) ▪ warm up in preparation for exercise or activity. ORIGIN perhaps from LIMBER(Cf. ↑limber) in the dialect sense «cart shaft», with allusion to the to and fro motion …   English terms dictionary

  • Limber — Lim ber, a. [Akin to limp, a. [root]125. See {Limp}, a.] Easily bent; flexible; pliant; yielding. Milton. [1913 Webster] The bargeman that doth row with long and limber oar. Turbervile. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Limber — Lim ber, v. t. To cause to become limber; to make flexible or pliant. Richardson. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • limber — limber; un·limber; …   English syllables

  • limber — index flexible, malleable, pliable, pliant Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • limber — adj *supple, lithe, lithesome, lissome Analogous words: pliant, pliable, *plastic: flexible, *elastic, resilient, springy Contrasted words: *stiff, inflexible, rigid, tense, stark, wooden …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • limber — [adj] flexible agile, deft, elastic, graceful, lissome, lithe, lithesome, loose, nimble, plastic, pliable, pliant, resilient, springy, spry, supple; concepts 406,488 Ant. rigid, stiff, straight, unbending …   New thesaurus