The term “sock” may come from the Latin word soccus, which referred to a loose-fitting stocking worn by comedic actors in ancient Rome. The term could also refer to a low-heeled light shoe. Over time, the term “socc” entered Old English to refer to lightweight slippers.

The word might also derive from “sykkos,” a Greek word referring to a thin shoe worn under the sandals, like a sock would be worn under a shoe. Both Greek and Latin evolved from Proto Indo-European, a lost language that linguists believe gave rise to the languages spoken by 43% of today’s human beings. So there could be an even older version of the word “sock” we will never know about.