Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


The clergyman was coming along the path with Schwitter at his heels.

Cars—hundreds of cars—from the highway—they're coming along the road.

Yes, it was a footstep light and rapid, coming along the gravel-walk.

Some one was moving there, coming along the path from the upper end of the cove.

Mr. Right'll be coming along here some time and then—good night!

We must not forget that the steamer from Esmeralda with the soldiers may be coming along.

Wang was coming along the jetty slowly, with intent, straining eyes.

The math is coming along so well with Taffy's help, keep on with it.

I've been so busy at wasps all day coming along, having got a nice book about them.

Before long she saw him coming along, holding his arms behind him.


Old English cuman "come, approach, land; come to oneself, recover; arrive; assemble" (class IV strong verb; past tense cuom, com, past participle cumen), from Proto-Germanic *kwem- (cf. Old Saxon cuman, Old Frisian kuma, Middle Dutch comen, Dutch komen, Old High German queman, German kommen, Old Norse koma, Gothic qiman), from PIE root *gwa-, *gwem- "to go, come" (cf. Sanskrit gamati "he goes," Avestan jamaiti "goes," Tocharian kakmu "come," Lithuanian gemu "to be born," Greek bainein "to go, walk, step," Latin venire "to come").

The substitution of Middle English -o- for Old English -u- before -m-, -n-, or -r- was a scribal habit before minims to avoid misreading the letters in the old style handwriting, which jammed letters. The practice similarly transformed some, monk, tongue, worm. Modern past tense form came is Middle English, probably from Old Norse kvam, replacing Old English cuom.

Remarkably productive with prepositions (NTC's "Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs" lists 198 combinations); consider the varied senses in come to "regain consciousness," come over "possess" (as an emotion), come at "attack," come on (interj.) "be serious," and come off "occur." For sexual senses, see cum.

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.