c. 1300, "approval, voluntary acceptance of what is done or proposed," also "agreement in sentiment, unity in opinion," from Old French consente, from consentir "agree; comply," from Latin consentire "agree, accord," literally "feel together," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + sentire"to feel" (see sense (n.) ).
In Middle English sometimes in a negative sense, "yielding (to sinful desire); connivance." Age of consent, at which one's consent to certain acts is legally valid, is attested from 1650s.
c. 1600, "feel pain or distress" (a sense now obsolete); 1620s, "take (something) ill, consider as an injury or affront; be in some degree angry or provoked at," from French ressentir "feel pain, regret," from Old French resentir "feel again, feel in turn" (13c.), from re-, here perhaps an intensive prefix (see re-), + sentir "to feel," from Latin sentire (see sense (n.)). It sometimes could have a positive sense in English, "appreciate, be grateful for" (1640s), but this is obsolete. Related: Resented; resenting.
Meaning "what one feels about something" (1630s) and modern spelling seem to be a re-introduction from French (where it was spelled sentiment by 17c.). A vogue word mid-18c. with wide application, commonly "a thought colored by or proceeding from emotion" (1762), especially as expressed in literature or art. The 17c. sense is preserved in phrases such as my sentiments exactly.
1610s, "a reaction to external stimulation of the sense organs," from French sensation (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin sensationem (nominative sensatio), from Late Latin sensatus "endowed with sense, sensible," from Latin sensus "feeling" (see sense (n.)). Meaning "state of shock, surprise, in a community" first recorded 1779.
The great object of life is sensation — to feel that we exist, even though in pain. It is this 'craving void' which drives us to gaming — to battle, to travel — to intemperate, but keenly felt, pursuits of any description, whose principal attraction is the agitation inseparable from their accomplishment. [Lord Byron, letter, Sept. 6, 1813]
Originally a hunting term. The -c- appeared 17c., perhaps by influence of ascent, descent, etc., or by influence of science. This was a tendency in early Modern English, also in scythe and for a time threatening to make scite and scituate. Figurative use from 1550s. Transitive sense "impregnate with an odor, perfume" is from 1690s. Related: Scented; scenting.
Other Middle English senses included "susceptible to injury or pain" (early 15c., now gone with sensitive); "worldly, temporal, outward" (c. 1400); "carnal, unspiritual" (early 15c., now gone with sensual). Related: Sensibleness.
Meaning "easily affected" (with reference to mental feelings) first recorded 1816; meaning "having intense physical sensation" is from 1849. Original meaning is preserved in sensitive plant (1630s), which is "mechanically irritable in a higher degree than almost any other plant" [Century Dictionary]. Meaning "involving national security" is recorded from 1953. Related: Sensitively; sensitiveness.
From early 14c. as "judgment rendered by God, or by one in authority; a verdict, decision in court;" from late 14c. as "understanding, wisdom; edifying subject matter." From late 14c. as "subject matter or content of a letter, book, speech, etc.," also in reference to a passage in a written work. Sense of "grammatically complete statement" is attested from mid-15c. "Meaning," then "meaning expressed in words." Related: Sentential.
Old English sendan "send, send forth; throw, impel," from Proto-Germanic *sond- (source also of Old Saxon sendian, Old Norse and Old Frisian senda, Middle Low German and Middle Dutch senden, Dutch zenden, German senden, Gothic sandjan), causative form of base *sinþan, denoting "go, journey" (source of Old English sið "way, journey," Old Norse sinn, Gothic sinþs "going, walk, time"), from PIE root *sent- "to head for, go" (source also of Lithuanian siųsti "send;" see sense (n.)).
Also used in Old English of divine ordinance (as in godsend, from Old English sand "messenger, message," from Proto-Germanic *sandaz "that which is sent"). Slang sense of "to transport with emotion, delight" is recorded from 1932, in American English jazz slang.