Saturday, May 16, 2009

Where does the word "fee" come from?

The word "fee", meaning a payment exchanged for something of value, originally comes from the old English word "feoh". It is related to the German word "Vieh", ultimately deriving from the Proto-Indo-European *peku.

This word literally means "(owned) cattle". In traditional societies, the amount of cattle a family owned was a measure of wealth, and eventually the meaning of the word changed to not only stand for livestock, but also for money and property.

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