"coat, hair, or fur of a mammal," 1831, from French pelage "hair or wool of an animal" (16c.), from Old French pel "hair," from Latin pilus "hair" (see pile (n.3)). Used in zoology as plumage is of birds. Middle English had pelure "fur, especially of a valuable kind," c. 1300, from Old French.
mid-14c., pelot, "any little ball," as of a medicine or food, but especially a little metallic ball used as a missile, from Old French pelote "small ball" (11c.) and directly from Medieval Latin pelotis, from Vulgar Latin *pilotta, diminutive of Latin pila "ball, playing ball, the game of ball," perhaps originally "ball of hair," from pilus "hair" (see pile (n.3)).
early 15c., depilacioun, "loss of hair;" 1540s, "act or process of removing hair from the skin or a hide;" from Modern Latin depilationem, noun of action from past-participle stem of Late Latin depilare "pull out the hair, pluck out the feathers," from de- "completely" (see de-) + pilatus, past participle of Latin pilare "deprive of hair," from pilus "hair" (see pile (n.3)).
c. 1600, "having the property of removing hair from the skin," from French dépilatorie (adj.), from Latin depilatus "having one's hair plucked," from de- "completely" (see de-) + pilatus, past participle of pilare "deprive of hair," from pilus "hair" (see pile (n.3)). Earlier in same sense was Depilative. As a noun, "application used to remove hair without injuring the skin," from c. 1600, from French dépilatorie (n.).
late 14c., "act of plundering" (especially in war), from Old French pilage (14c.) "plunder," from pillier "to plunder, loot, ill-treat," possibly from Vulgar Latin *piliare "to plunder," probably from a figurative use of Latin pilare "to strip of hair," perhaps also meaning "to skin" (compare figurative extension of verbs pluck, fleece), from pilus "a hair" (see pile (n.3)).
Pillage and spoil especially suggest the great loss to the owner, completely stripping or despoiling them of their property ; plunder suggests the quantity and value of that which is taken : as, loaded with plunder; booty is primarily the spoils of war, but also of a raid or combined action, as of pirates, brigands, or burglars .... [Century Dictionary]
late 14c. as a term of reproach for a corrupt or lax prelate, from the Roman surname, especially that of Pontius Pilate, a governor of the Roman province of Judaea under Tiberius, from Latin Pilatus, literally "armed with javelins," from pilum "javelin" (see pile (n.2)).
Other than having presided over the trial of Jesus and ordering his crucifixion, little is known of him. In Middle English pilates vois was "a loud, boastful voice," of the sort used by Pilate in the mystery plays. Among slang and cant uses of Pontius Pilate mentioned in the 1811 "Dictionary of Buckish Slang, University Wit and Pickpocket Eloquence" is "(Cambridge) a Mr. Shepherd of Trinity College; who disputing with a brother parson on the comparative rapidity with which they read the liturgy, offered to give him as far as Pontius Pilate in the Belief."
"to strip off" the skin, bark, or rind from, developed from Old English pilian "to peel, skin, decorticate, strip the skin or ring," and Old French pillier, both from Latin pilare "to strip of hair," from pilus "hair" (see pile (n.3)). Probably also influenced by Latin pellis "skin, hide." Related: Peeled; peeling. Intransitive sense of "to lose the skin or rind" is from 1630s.
The figurative expression keep (one's) eyes peeled "be observant, be on the alert" is by 1852, American English, perhaps a play on the potato "eye," which is peeled by stripping off the skin. Peel out "speed away from a place in a car, on a motorcycle, etc.," is hot-rodders' slang, attested by 1952, perhaps from the notion of leaving behind a "peel" of rubber from the tire as it skids. Aircraft pilot phrase peel off "veer away from formation" is from World War II; earlier American English had slang peel it "run away at full speed" (1860).