See also: Aye, a'ye, and AYE

English

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Etymology 1

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From Middle English ay, ai, aȝȝ, from Old Norse ei, ey, from Proto-Germanic *aiwa, *aiwō (ever, always) (compare Old English āwo, āwa, ā, ō, Middle Dutch ie, German je), from *aiwaz (age; law) (compare Old English ǣ(w) (law), West Frisian ieu (century), Dutch eeuw (century)), from Proto-Indo-European *h₂eyu- (long time) (compare Irish aois (age, period), Breton oad (age, period), Latin ævum (eternity), Ancient Greek αἰών (aiṓn)). Doublet of aeviternity and aevum.

Pronunciation

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Adverb

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aye (not comparable)

  1. (archaic) ever, always
    • 1610–1611 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act IV, scene i]:
      [] Do that good miſcheefe, which may make this Iſland / Thine owne for euer, and I thy Caliban, / For aye thy foot-licker.
    • 1834, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner:
      The ship drove fast, loud roared the blast, / And southward aye we fled.
    • 1851 November 14, Herman Melville, chapter XIII, in Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, 1st American edition, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers; London: Richard Bentley, →OCLC:
      Huge hills and mountains of casks on casks were piled upon her wharves, and side by side the world-wandering whale ships lay silent and safely moored at last; while from others came a sound of carpenters and coopers, with blended noises of fires and forges to melt the pitch, all betokening that new cruises were on the start; that one most perilous and long voyage ended, only begins a second; and a second ended, only begins a third, and so on, for ever and for aye.
    • 1863, Translation by Catherine Winkworth:
      Let the Amen sound from His people again; Gladly for aye we adore Him. (Praise to the Lord, the Almighty)
Quotations
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Derived terms
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References
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  1. ^ John A. Simpson and Edmund S. C. Weiner, editors (1989), “aye”, in The Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, Oxford: Clarendon Press, →ISBN.

Etymology 2

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"Appears suddenly about 1575, and is exceedingly common about 1600."[1] Probably from use of aye (ever, always) as expression of agreement or affirmation, or from Middle English a ye (oh yes), or synthesis of both. More at oh, yea.

Alternative forms

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Pronunciation

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Interjection

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aye

  1. yes; yea; a word expressing assent, or an affirmative answer to a question.
  2. (nautical) a word used to acknowledge a command from a superior, usually preceded by a verbatim repeat-back.
Usage notes
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  • It is much used in Scotland, the north and Midlands of England, Northern Ireland, and North Wales, as well as in New Zealand (where it may follow rather than precede a statement). Also notably seen in viva voce voting in legislative bodies, etc., or in nautical contexts.
Synonyms
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Antonyms
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Derived terms
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Translations
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References
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  • Frank Graham (1987) The New Geordie Dictionary, →ISBN
  • Newcastle 1970s, Scott Dobson and Dick Irwin, [2]
  • A Dictionary of North East Dialect, Bill Griffiths, 2005, Northumbria University Press, →ISBN

Noun

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aye (plural ayes)

  1. An affirmative vote; one who votes in the affirmative.
    "To call for the ayes and nays;" "The ayes have it."
Synonyms
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Translations
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References

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  1. ^ James A. H. Murray [et al.], editors (1884–1928), “Aye”, in A New English Dictionary on Historical Principles (Oxford English Dictionary), volumes I (A–B), London: Clarendon Press, →OCLC, page 601, column 3.

Etymology 3

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Probably of multiple motivations, the sounds having been chosen for functional reasons.

Pronunciation

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Interjection

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aye

  1. (MLE, MTE, regional African-American Vernacular) an attention grabber
    Synonyms: hey, oi, I say
    Aye, come here!
    Aye, what do you have?
  2. (New Zealand) Alternative spelling of ay (question tag)

Anagrams

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Baba Malay

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Etymology

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From Malay air (water).[1]

Pronunciation

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Noun

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aye

  1. water

References

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  1. ^ Nala H. Lee (2022) A Grammar of Modern Baba Malay[1], De Gruyter, →DOI, →ISBN

Indonesian

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Etymology

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From Betawi aye. Doublet of saya.

Pronoun

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aye

  1. (Jakarta, slang) First-person singular pronoun: I, me, my

Synonyms

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Other pronouns with the same meaning used in Jakarta:

Other pronouns with the same meaning used elsewhere:

Middle English

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Noun

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aye (plural ayer or ayren)

  1. Alternative form of ey (egg)

Scots

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Pronunciation

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Etymology 1

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From Old Norse ei, ey, cognate with Old English ā. See the etymology for the English word above.

Alternative forms

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Adverb

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aye (not comparable)

  1. always, still
    A'll aye be wi ye an A'm nae carin whit thay sae.
    I'll always be with you and I don't care what they say.
    It'll aye be the same wi thaim thou.
    It'll still be the same with them though.

Etymology 2

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Interjection

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aye

  1. Alternative form of ay

References

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Spanish

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Noun

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aye m (plural ayes)

  1. whine; whining; whinging

Yola

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Etymology

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From Middle English ay, from Old Norse ey.

Pronunciation

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Adverb

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aye

  1. ever
    • 1867, CONGRATULATORY ADDRESS IN THE DIALECT OF FORTH AND BARGY, page 116, lines 14-15:
      till ee zin o'oure daies be var aye be ee-go t'glade.
      until the sun of our lives (be for ever) be gone down the dark valley (of death).

References

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  • Jacob Poole (d. 1827) (before 1828) William Barnes, editor, A Glossary, With some Pieces of Verse, of the old Dialect of the English Colony in the Baronies of Forth and Bargy, County of Wexford, Ireland, London: J. Russell Smith, published 1867, page 116

Yoruba

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Alternative forms

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Etymology 1

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Cognate with Edo aye

Pronunciation

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Noun

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ayé

  1. world
  2. life
Derived terms
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Etymology 2

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Pronunciation

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Noun

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àyè

  1. chance, opportunity
Derived terms
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  • ráyè (to get the opportunity)

Etymology 3

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Alternative forms

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Pronunciation

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Noun

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àyè

  1. (Ekiti) lies, falsehood
    Synonyms: irọ́, ụrọ́, èké
Derived terms
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