Student Dictionary

2 entries found for queue.
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Main Entry: 1queue
Pronunciation: primarystresskyü
Function: noun
Etymology: from French queue, literally, "tail," from Latin coda, cauda "tail" --related to CODA, COWARD, 3CUE --see Word History at COWARD
1 : a pigtail usually worn hanging at the back of the head
2 : a waiting line <a queue at a ticket window>
3 : a sequence of messages or jobs held in temporary storage in a computer awaiting transmission or processing
Word History The Latin word cauda or coda, meaning "tail," passed into French and in time ended up being spelled queue. English borrowed this word, giving it the meaning "a long braid of hair," one that hangs from a person's head like a tail. This sense is still in use, but we more commonly refer to such a braid as a pigtail today. In the 19th century, queue came to be used for something else that looked like a tail -- a number of people waiting in line.

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