Origin of bison
- Latin bisōn of Germanic origin Old High German wisunt
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- Middle English bisontes (plural), from Old French bison, from Latin bisōn, bisōnt- (“wild ox”), from Proto-Germanic *wisundaz (“wild ox, aurochs”), from Proto-Indo-European *wisAn- (“aurochs, aurochs horn”), from Proto-Indo-European *weys- (“to flow, melt”). Akin to Old High German wisunt "bison" (German Wisent "bison"), Old English wesend, wusend "bison, buffalo, wild ox", Middle Dutch wēsent "wild ox".