The word judge first started showing up in English as a surname in the thirteenth century and then as a noun in the fourteenth century, replacing the previous word, doomer. At the time, it had the spelling iuge or iug, with the y-like pronunciation at the beginning becoming a hard j and the d being added toward the mid-sixteenth century. The word comes from Old French juge, which meant the same thing and was in turn borrowed from Latin iudex (also the source of judicial and prejudice). Iudex literally translates to "one who says the law", as it was composed of iux, meaning "law" or "right", and dicere, a verb meaning "to say". Finally, iux comes from the Proto-Indo-European root hyew, also "right", and dicere derives from Proto-Indo-European deykti, "to point out".
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a senior studying government and linguistics at Harvard University, where I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy trivia, politics, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.