city in Australia, named 1837 for William Lamb (1779-1848), 2nd Viscount Melbourne, then British Prime Minister; the title is from Melbourne Hall, Derbyshire. The place name is literally "mill stream," Old English Mileburne (1086).
1650s, "to fondle, caress, indulge, make a pet of," from a noun (1570s) meaning "lamb brought up as a pet" (applied to persons from 1590s), of uncertain origin. Perhaps [Skeat] from Old English cot-sæta "one who dwells in a cot" (see cote (n.) + sit (v.)). Related: Coseted; coseting. Compare German Hauslamm, Italian casiccio.
mid-14c., "act of chopping, cutting with a quick blow," from chop (v.1). Meaning "piece cut off" is mid-15c.; specifically "slice of mutton, lamb, or pork" (usually cut from the loin and containing the rib) is from 1630s, probably from being "chopped" from the loin. Sense of "a blow, strike" is from 1550s. Specific cricket/baseball sense of "a downward stroke with the bat" is by 1888.
zodiacal constellation usually identified as "the Ram," late Old English, from Latin aries "ram" (related to arietare "to butt"), from a PIE root meaning "spring, jump" (source also of Lithuanian ėrytis, Old Church Slavonic jarici, Armenian oroj "lamb;" Greek eriphos, Old Irish heirp "kid"). Meaning "person born under the sign of Aries" is from 1894; they also have been called Arian (1917).