Bread (Etymology Of The Word). Bread is brayed grain, from the verb to bray, or pound; expressive of the old method of making the meal. Dough comes from the Anglo-Saxon word deawian, to wet, to moisten. Loaf is from the Anglo-Saxon lif-ian, to raise, to lift up - as raided bread. Leaven is derived from the French word lever, to raise, or the Saxon word lif-ion.