The noun sherry (referring to the type of white wine) was first attested as shirry around the beginning of the 1700s. Early on, it was also spelled shery and sherie until the modern form became standardized toward the end of the century. The previous word for the drink was sherris, but people mistook the s for meaning that it was plural, so they increasingly elided the sound until it became more correct not to use it. That comes from the Spanish phrase vino de Xeres, meaning "wine from Xeres", a region in Andalusia. The name Xeres (now Jeres) comes from the Roman city name urbs Caesaris, or "city of Caesar", and the etymology of Caesar is disputed, but it might be from the perfect past participle caeso, "cut out". Literary usage of the word sherry peaked in 1867, but has recently been trending upwards again.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a junior 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.