1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Saw
SAW, a tool for cutting wood or other material, consisting of a blade with the edge dentated or toothed and worked either by hand or by steam, water, electric or other power (see Tools). The word in O. Eng. is saga and appears, in such forms as Dutch zaag, Dan. sav, Ger. Säge, in Teutonic languages. The root is sag-, to cut, which is seen in Lat. secare. It is also the base of such English words as scythe, sickle, &c. It must be distinguished from “saw,” a maxim, proverb, which is etymologically and in meaning a “ saying, ” from the Teutonic base sag- to say; cf. “Saga,” Ger. sagen.