The first stretch limousine wasn't invented until 1928, but the word limousine has been around since the beginning of the twentieth century, when it mostly referred to enclosed luxury cars in general. The term comes from the French geographic region of Limousin, the connection being a perceived similarity between the enclosed part of the cars and a style of hood popularly worn by people in that province. Limousin gets its name from Limoges, a city there, and that name is from the Latin exonym Lemovices, referring to a Gaulish tribe that lived in central France. Finally, Lemovices probably means "winners with elm" and derives from a Proto-Indo-European origin. The abbreviation limo is from 1959, and after a three-decade rise the rebracketing has finally become more widely used than its predecessor.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a rising 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.