This is part of a continuing experience of tour guides and etymology.

Last year, in Ireland, it was "lynch" and "donnybrook."

I was touring through the Netherlands (check out www.nbceurope.com,

where the Netherlands was recently voted #1 for travelers), and the tour

guide pointed out the canals and the high ground next to the water.

"That's where the word 'high way' comes from."


"High way" is a nice word to get right. OED has a computer "highway"

from 1949.

OED has "king's high way" from 859. One citation states that "the

king's peace" and "the king's highway" are related terms. If so, then

"highway" has to do with royalty, and the Netherlands' canal theory is all

washed up.