I'm sure like many students of Chinese, my first encounter with the character
留 was in the word
留学, meaning "to study abroad".
Some time later I encountered
留 as an independent word, meaning "to stay". Most of the compounds with
留 are consistent with that meaning (
保留, etc.). However,
留学 doesn't really make a lot of sense as "stay" + "study". The dictionary was not very helpful, as it listed
留学 as a (presumably obvious) example of
留 meaning "to stay in a place".
Could someone proffer an explanation as to how "staying a place studying" came to mean "study abroad" as opposed to, say, "going to boarding school"? Perhaps someone knows something the history of either Chinese education and/or the usage of the word