(by extension) Mental reach or scope; penetration; the extent of capacity; depth of thought or contrivance.
(archaic) To encircle with outstretched arms, especially to take a measurement; to embrace.
- not get
Other Word Forms of Fathom
Origin of Fathom
From Middle English fathome, fadome, from Old English fæþm, fæþme (“outstretched or encircling arms, embrace, grasp, protection, interior, bosom, lap, breast, womb, fathom, cubit, power, expanse, surface”), from Proto-Germanic *faþmaz (“embrace”), from Proto-Indo-European *pet- (“to spread out, extend”). Cognate with Low German fadem, faem (“a cubit, thread”), Dutch vadem, vaam (“fathom”), German Faden (“thread, filament, fathom”), Danish favn (“embrace, fathom”), Swedish famn (“the arms, bosom, embrace”), Icelandic faðmur (“embrace”).
Middle English fathme from Old English fæthm outstretched arms petə- in Indo-European roots
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
Fathom Is Also Mentioned In
Find Similar Words
Find similar words to fathom using the buttons below.