Etymology
Advertisement
raft (v.)

"transport or float on a raft," 1680s, from raft (n.1). Related: Rafted; rafting.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
fleeting (adj.)
early 13c., "fickle, shifting, unstable," from Old English fleotende "floating, drifting," later "flying, moving swiftly," from present participle of fleotan "to float, drift, flow" (see fleet (v.)). Meaning "existing only briefly" is from 1560s. Related: Fleetingly.
Related entries & more 
drift (v.)

late 16c., "to float or be driven along by a current," from drift (n.). Transitive sense of "to drive in heaps" is from 1610s. Figurative sense of "be passive and listless" is from 1822. Related: Drifted; drifting. To drift apart "gradually lose mutual affection" is by 1859.

Related entries & more 
vogue (n.)

1570s, the vogue, "height of popularity or accepted fashion," from French vogue "fashion, success;" also "drift, swaying motion (of a boat)" literally "a rowing," from Old French voguer "to row, sway, set sail" (15c.), probably from a Germanic source. Compare Old High German wagon "to float, fluctuate," literally "to balance oneself;" German Woge "wave, billow," wogen "fluctuate, float" (from PIE root *wegh- "to go, move").

Perhaps the notion is of being "borne along on the waves of fashion." Italian voga "a rowing," Spanish boga "rowing," but colloquially "fashion, reputation" also probably are from the same Germanic source. Phrase in vogue "having a prominent place in popular fashion" first recorded 1643. The fashion magazine began publication in 1892.

Related entries & more 
seaweed (n.)

"plant or plants growing in the sea," 1570s, from sea + weed (n.). Middle English had sechaf ("sea-chaff"), slauk, flet-wort  (Old English fleotwyrt: "float-wort"). Another Old English word for it was sæ war.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
balsa (n.)
1852 as the name of a tropical South American tree noted for its soft, light-weight wood, apparently from Spanish balsa "float," originally the name of rafts used on the Pacific coast of Latin America (attested in English in this sense from 1777, also balza), perhaps from a native word of Peru. Related: Balsa-wood (1913).
Related entries & more 
hove (v.1)
mid-13c., of birds, "remain suspended in air;" also generally, "to float, rise to the surface;" from c. 1300 as "wait in readiness or expectation;" late 14c. as "loom protectively over," also figurative, of unknown origin. In Middle English often of ships at anchor, standing off a coast. Common 13c.-16c., then superseded by its derivative, hover (v.)).
Related entries & more 
sail (v.)

Old English segilan "travel on water in a ship by the action of wind upon sails; equip with a sail," from the same Germanic source as sail (n.); cognate with Old Norse sigla, Middle Dutch seghelen, Dutch zeilen, Middle Low German segelen, German segeln. Later extended to travel over water by steam power or other mechanical agency. The meaning "to set out on a sea voyage, leave port" is from c. 1200. Extended sense of "float through the air; move forward impressively" is by late 14c., as is the sense of "sail over or upon." Related: Sailed; sailing.

Related entries & more 
buoy (n.)
"float fixed in a place to indicate the position of objects underwater or to mark a channel," late 13c., boie, probably from Old French buie or Middle Dutch boeye, both of which likely are from Proto-Germanic *baukna- "beacon, signal" (see beacon). OED and Century Dictionary, however, suggest it is from Middle Dutch boeie or Old French boie "fetter, chain" (see boy), "because of its being fettered to a spot."
Related entries & more 
ride (v.)

Middle English riden, from Old English ridan "sit or be carried on" (as on horseback), "move forward; rock; float, sail" (class I strong verb; past tense rad, past participle riden), from Proto-Germanic *ridan (source also of Old Norse riða, Old Saxon ridan, Old Frisian rida "to ride," Middle Dutch riden, Dutch rijden, Old High German ritan, German reiten), from PIE *reidh- "to ride" (source also of Old Irish riadaim "I travel," Old Gaulish reda "chariot"). Common to Celtic and Germanic, perhaps a loan word from one to the other.

Of a ship, "to sail, float, rock," c. 1300. The meaning "heckle" is by 1912 from earlier sense of "dominate cruelly, have the mastery of, harass at will" (1580s) on the notion of "control and manage," as a rider does a horse, especially harshly or arrogantly. The verb in venery is from mid-13c.

To ride out "endure (a storm, etc.) without great damage" is from 1520s, literal and figurative. To let (something) ride "allow to pass without comment or intervention" is by 1921. To ride herd on "guard and control" is by 1897, from cattle-driving. To ride shotgun "ride in the passenger seat of an automobile" is by 1919, from the custom of having an armed man up beside the driver of a stagecoach to ward off trouble. To ride shank's mare "walk" is from 1846 (see shank (n.)). The ____ rides again cliche is from Hollywood movie titles ("Destry Rides Again," 1939).

Related entries & more 

Page 2