adj. saf·er, saf·est
a. Free from danger or injury; undamaged or unhurt: He returned from the voyage safe and sound.
b. Not exposed to the threat of danger or harm: The children were safe at home all through the storm.
c. Usable in specified conditions without being damaged. Often used in combination: a microwave safe container.
2. Free from risk; not liable to be lost; sure: a safe bet.
3. Affording protection: a safe place.
4. Baseball Having reached a base without being put out, as a batter or base runner.
1. A metal container usually having a lock, used for storing valuables.
2. A repository for protecting stored items, especially a cooled compartment for perishable foods: a cheese safe.
[Middle English sauf, from Old French, from Latin salvus, healthy; see sol- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.