nightmare etymology

English word nightmare comes from Proto-Indo-European *mr-, and later Proto-Germanic *marǭ (Evil (female) spirit; succubus; incubus. Nightmare.)

Detailed word origin of nightmare

Dictionary entryLanguageDefinition
*mr- Proto-Indo-European (ine-pro) to die
*marǭ Proto-Germanic (gem-pro) Evil (female) spirit; succubus; incubus. Nightmare.
mare Old English (ca. 450-1100) (ang) Nightmare, evil spirit.
niȝtmare Middle English (1100-1500) (enm)
nightmare English (eng) (figuratively) Any bad, miserable, difficult or terrifying situation or experience that arouses anxiety, terror, agony or great displeasure.. (now, _, rare) A female demon or monster, thought to plague people while they slept and cause a feeling of suffocation and terror during sleep.. A very bad or frightening dream.

Words with the same origin as nightmare

Descendants of *mr-
breach brook creek mara mare mere moor morbid more moreover morn morning morrow mort mortgage mortuary murder murdered murdering murderous tomorrow