Etymology
Advertisement
snark (n.)

imaginary animal, coined 1876 by Lewis Carroll in "The Hunting of the Snark." In 1950s, name of a type of U.S. cruise missile, and in 1980s, of a type of sailboat. Meaning "caustic, opinionated, and critical rhetoric" is from c. 2002, probably from snarky and not directly related, if at all, to Lewis Carroll's use of snark.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
destruct (v.)

"to destroy," 1958, probably a back-formation from destruction in the jargon of U.S. aerospace and defense workers to refer to deliberate destruction of a missile in flight by a friendly agent; popularized 1966 in form self-destruct in the voice-over at the beginning of TV spy drama "Mission Impossible." OED records an isolated use of destructed from 17c., in this case probably from Latin destructus, past participle of destruere.

Related entries & more 
ballistic (adj.)
1775, "pertaining to construction and use of thrown objects," ultimately from Greek ballein "to throw" (from PIE root *gwele- "to throw, reach"). Of rockets or missiles (ones that are guided while under propulsion, but fall freely), from 1949. Ballistic missile first attested 1954; they attain extreme heights, hence figurative expression go ballistic (1981) "become irrationally angry."
Related entries & more 
projectile (n.)

"body projected or impelled forward by force," 1660s, from Modern Latin projectilis, from Latin proiectus, past participle of proicere "stretch out, throw forth," from pro- "forward" (see pro-) + combining form of iacere (past participle iactus) "to throw" (from PIE root *ye- "to throw, impel"). Specifically "a missile intended to be shot from a cannon by explosion of gunpowder, etc."

Related entries & more 
confrontation (n.)

1630s, "action of bringing two parties face to face," for examination and discovery of the truth, from Medieval Latin confrontationem (nominative confrontatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of confrontari, from assimilated form of Latin com "with, together" (see con-) + frontem (nominative frons) "forehead" (see front (n.)). International political sense is attested from 1963 and traces to the "Cuban missile crisis" of the previous year.

Related entries & more 
Advertisement
goad (n.)
Old English gad "point, spearhead, arrowhead, pointed stick used for driving cattle," from Proto-Germanic *gaido "goad, spear" (source also of Lombardic gaida "spear"), which is perhaps cognate with Sanskrit hetih "missile, projectile," himsati "he injures;" Avestan zaena- "weapon;" Greek khaios "shepherd's staff;" Old English gar "spear;" Old Irish gae "spear." Figurative use "anything that urges or stimulates" is since 16c., probably from the Bible.
Related entries & more 
pellet (n.)

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)).

Related entries & more 
hyperbole (n.)
"obvious exaggeration in rhetoric," early 15c., from Latin hyperbole, from Greek hyperbole "exaggeration, extravagance," literally "a throwing beyond," from hyper- "beyond" (see hyper-) + bole "a throwing, a casting, the stroke of a missile, bolt, beam," from bol-, nominative stem of ballein "to throw" (from PIE root *gwele- "to throw, reach"). Rhetorical sense is found in Aristotle and Isocrates. Greek had a verb, hyperballein, "to throw over or beyond."
Related entries & more 
dart (n.)

early 14c., "metal-pointed missile weapon thrown by the hand," from Old French dart "throwing spear, arrow," from Proto-Germanic *darothuz (source also of Old English daroð, Old High German tart "a dart, javelin," Old Norse darraþr "dart"). Italian and Spanish dardo are said to be from Germanic by way of Old Provençal. Also used since Middle English of Cupid's love-arrows. Dart-board is from 1901.

Related entries & more 
aim (v.)
c. 1300, "to estimate (number or size), calculate, count" (senses now obsolete), from Old French aesmer, esmer (Old North French amer) "to value, rate; count, estimate," ultimately from Latin aestimare "appraise, determine the value of" (see esteem (v.)).

Meaning in English apparently developed from "calculate," to "calculate with a view to action, plan," then to "direct a missile, a blow, etc." (late 14c.). Also used in Middle English of directing a letter, planting an altar, pitching a tent. Intransitive sense "intend, attempt" (early 14c.) was used by Shakespeare but is now considered colloquial. Related: Aimed; aiming.
Related entries & more 

Page 3