sep·pu·ku (sĕp-k, sĕ-p-)
Ritual suicide by disembowelment formerly practiced by Japanese samurai. Also called hara-kiri.
[Japanese : setsu, to cut (from Middle Chinese tshiat; also the source of Mandarin qiè) + fuku, stomach, abdomen (from Middle Chinese fuwk; also the source of Mandarin fù).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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.