need [ni:d] vt. 需要；必须 aux. 必须；不得不 n. 需要；需要的东西；责任；贫穷 vi. （表示应该或不得不做）有必要
在辩论过程中，北卡罗来纳州Buncombe县议员沃克(Felix Walker费力克斯 )发表了冗长的讲话，与讨论的问题毫不相关。许多与会者纷纷退场。沃克不得已中断讲话并表示歉意。他解释说，他作此长篇发言不是为了讲给大家听，而是为了发表在Buncombe的地方报上。他说，“1 was talking for／to Buncombe．”
就这样，talking for／to Buncombe这一短语成了talking nonsense（发空论）的同义语。尔后该短语被缩略成bunkum，到了20世纪又简化为bunk，用以表示“空话”、“废话”、“骗人的鬼话”等义。实际上，bunk(um)可以说是Buncombe这一地名的变体和缩略。1916年美国汽车制造商福特（Henry Ford，1863 - 1947）说了一句名言：“History is more or less bunk.”（历史多少有点骗人），使bunk一词得以广为流传。约在1920年有一位名叫William E.Woodward伍德沃的人针对福特写了《骗人的鬼话》(Bunk)一书。他在书中据bunk杜撰了debunk一词，用以表示“揭穿”或“暴露”。今天bunk在美国几乎成了一个家喻户晓的常用词，这或许是人们看到许多社会现象需要予以揭露(they see so much that needs debunking)的缘故吧。
原为航海术语。船只在航行时往往受风的影响而偏离航线，向下风方向(leeward)漂移，此所谓偏航，造成的偏差就称leeway，汉语作“风压差”或“风压角”。假若船只逆巨浪行驶，或者船的龙骨( keel)不够长，不够深，驾驭不了水势，承受不住狂风，风压差就会很大，船只就可能很危险。即使不危险，偏航及由此产生的风压差也绝非行船者所想望的。然而，当leeway 一词像别的术语一样被用作普通词语时，它却转义为“余地”或“余裕”。例如：We need some leeway if we are to act effectively.（若要使行动获得成效的话，我们就得有一些周转的余地。）再如：He has an hour's leeway to catch the train.（他有1小时的富余时间赶火车。）leeway摇身一变似乎成了人们希望得到的，受人欢迎的，像breathing space（喘息的机会，考虑的时间）一样的东西。人们并不反对把术语通俗化，即将术语用作普通词语。可是，假若两者意义如此惊人地不同，就不免招人非议了。不管反对与否，leeway作为一个常用词如今已完全确立了它在英语中的地位。
词根词缀：need需要 + -less形容词后缀，否定
词根词缀：need需要 + -y形容词后缀
Middle English nede, from Old English nied (West Saxon), ned (Mercian) "what is required, wanted, or desired; necessity, compulsion, the constraint of unavoidable circumstances; duty; hardship, emergency, trouble, time of peril or distress; errand, business," originally "violence, force," from Proto-Germanic *nauthiz/*naudiz (source also of Old Saxon nod, Old Norse nauðr "distress, emergency, need," Old Frisian ned, "force, violence; danger, anxiety, fear; need," Middle Dutch, Dutch nood "need, want, distress, peril," Old High German not, German Not "need, distress, necessity, hardship," Gothic nauþs "need").
This is apparently from a root *nauti- "death, to be exhausted," source also of Old English ne, neo, Old Norse na, Gothic naus "corpse;" Old Irish naunae "famine, shortage," Old Cornish naun "corpse;" Old Church Slavonic navi "corpse," nazda, Russian nuzda, Polish nędza "misery, distress;" Old Prussian nowis "corpse," nautin "need, distress," nawe "death;" Lithuanian novyti "to torture, kill," nove "death." As it is attested only in Germanic, Celtic, and Balto-Slavic, it might be non-PIE, from a regional substrate language.
From 12c. as "lack of something that is necessary or important; state or condition of needing something;" also "a necessary act, required work or duty." Meaning "extreme poverty, destitution, want of means of subsistence" is from early 14c.
The more common Old English word for "need, necessity, want" was ðearf, but they were connected via a notion of "trouble, pain," and the two formed a compound, niedðearf "need, necessity, compulsion, thing needed." Nied also might have been influenced by Old English neod "desire, longing," which often was spelled the same. Nied was common in Old English compounds, such as niedfaru "compulsory journey," a euphemism for "death;" niedhæmed "rape" (the second element being an Old English word meaning "sexual intercourse"); niedling "slave."
Old English neodian "be necessary, be required (for some purpose)," intransitive; also transitive, "require, have need of," from the same root as need (n.). Meaning "to be under obligation (to do something)," especially in negative or interrogative sentences implying obligation or necessity, is from late 14c. Related: Needed; needing. The adjectival phrase need-to-know is attested from 1952. Dismissive phrase who needs it?, popular from c. 1960, is a translated Yiddishism.
Need, especially in negative and interrogative sentences implying obligation or necessity, is often used, in the present, before an infinitive, usually without to, need being then invariable (without the personal terminations of the second and third persons singular): as, he or they need not go; need he do it? [Century Dictionary]