"a survey, a summary," 1934, American English, from over- + view (n.). In 17c. it meant "inspection, supervision," but by late 19c. this became obsolete. As a verb, 1540s as "look (something) over or through;" 1560s as "view from a superior position;" both now rare or obsolete. The modern word seems to be a new formation; it was mentioned in "American Speech" (1934) as "now being worked as hard by educationalists as 'purposeful', 'challenge', 'objective', 'motivation', et al."
mid-15c., purveu, in law, "the body of a statute, the substance of an act," from Anglo-French purveu est "it is provided," or purveu que "provided that" (late 13c.), clauses that introduced statutes in old legal documents, from Anglo-French purveu, Old French porveu (Modern French pourvu) "provided," past participle of porveoir "to provide," from Latin providere "look ahead, prepare, supply, act with foresight," from pro "ahead" (see pro-) + videre "to see" (from PIE root *weid- "to see").
The extended sense of "scope, extent" is attested by 1788 in "Federalist" (Madison). Modern sense and spelling influenced by view (n.).
1650s, "a view or prospect," from Italian vista "sight, view," noun use of fem. past participle of vedere "see," from Latin videre "to see" (from PIE root *weid- "to see").
1763, "pertaining to synopsis," from Modern Latin synopticus, from Late Latin synopsis (see synopsis). Greek synoptikos meant "taking a general or comprehensive view," and the sense "affording a general view" in English emerged by mid-19c. Specifically of the first three Gospels from 1841, on notion of "giving an account of events from the same point of view." Related Synoptical (1660s).