Etymology
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pump (v.)

c. 1500, "work with a pump, raise water or other liquid with a pump," from pump (n.1). The metaphoric extension "subject (a person) to a process resembling pumping" (to elicit information, money, etc.) is from 1630s. Transitive sense of "free from water or other fluid by means of a pump or pumps" is by 1640s. The meaning "to work with action like that of a pump-handle" is by 1803. To pump iron "lift weights for fitness" is by 1972.

Related: Pumped; pumping. Pumped up "raised artificially by a method likened to pumping" is by 1792; the sense of "excited, ready for action" is modern. Grose, in "Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue" (1788) has "To pump ship; to make water, and sometimes to vomit."

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ark (n.)

Middle English arke, from Old English earc, Old Northumbrian arc, mainly meaning Noah's, but also the Ark of the Covenant (the coffer holding the tables of the law in the sanctum sanctorum), from Latin arca "large box, chest" (see arcane), the word used in the Vulgate. It also was borrowed in Old High German (arahha, Modern German Arche).

In general as "a coffer, a box" by late 12c. Also sometimes in Middle English "the breast or chest as the seat of emotions." From the Noachian sense comes the extended meaning "place of refuge" (17c.). As the name of a type of ship or boat, from late 15c. In 19c. U.S., especially a large, flat-bottomed river boat to move produce, livestock, etc. to market.

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flotsam (n.)
c. 1600, from Anglo-French floteson, from Old French flotaison "a floating" (Modern French flottaison), from floter "to float, set afloat" (of Germanic origin and cognate with float) + -aison, from Latin -ation(em). Spelled flotsen in English till mid-19c. when it altered, perhaps under influence of many English words in -some. Folk-etymologized in dialect as floatsome.

In British law, flotsam are goods found floating on the sea as a consequence of a shipwreck or action of wind or waves; jetsam are things cast out of a ship in danger of being wrecked, and afterward washed ashore, or things cast ashore by the sailors. Whatever sinks is lagan. Flotsam and jetsam figuratively for "odds and ends" is attested by 1861.
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fore (adv., prep.)
Old English fore (prep.) "before, in front of, in presence of; because of, for the sake of; earlier in time; instead of;" as an adverb, "before, previously, formerly, once," from Proto-Germanic *fura "before" (source also of Old Saxon fora, Old Frisian fara, Old High German fora, German vor, Danish for, Old Norse fyrr, Gothic faiura "for"), from PIE *prae-, extended form of root *per- (1) "forward," hence "in front of, before."

Now displaced by before. In nautical use, "toward the bows of the ship." Merged from 13c. with the abbreviated forms of afore and before and thus formerly often written 'fore. As a noun, "the front," from 1630s. The warning cry in golf is first recorded 1878, probably a contraction of before.
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wrack (n.)

late 14c., "wrecked ship, shipwreck," probably from Middle Dutch wrak "wreck," from Proto-Germanic *wrakaz-, from root *wreg- "to push, shove, drive" (see wreak). The root sense perhaps is "that which is cast ashore." Sense perhaps influenced by Old English wræc "misery, punishment," and wrecan "to punish, drive out" (source of modern wreak). The meaning "damage, disaster, destruction" (in wrack and ruin) is from c. 1400, from the Old English word, but conformed in spelling to this one. Sense of "seaweed, etc., cast up on shore" is recorded from 1510s, probably an alteration of wreck (n.) in this sense (mid-15c.). Wrack, wreck, rack and wretch were utterly tangled in spelling and somewhat in sense in Middle and early modern English.

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cybernetics (n.)

"theory or study of communication and control," coined 1948 by U.S. mathematician Norbert Wiener (1894-1964), with -ics + Latinized form of Greek kybernetes "steersman" (metaphorically "guide, governor"), from kybernan "to steer or pilot a ship, direct as a pilot," figuratively "to guide, govern," which is of uncertain origin. Beekes agrees that "the word has no cognates" and concludes "Foreign origin is probable." The construction is perhaps based on 1830s French cybernétique "the art of governing."

The future offers very little hope for those who expect that our new mechanical slaves will offer us a world in which we may rest from thinking. Help us they may, but at the cost of supreme demands upon our honesty and our intelligence. [Norbert Wiener, "God and Golem, Inc.," 1964]
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loose cannon (n.)

in the figurative sense "wildly irresponsible person, potent person or thing freed from usual restraint," by 1896; in the literal sense an object of dread on old warships; the figurative use probably arose from a celebrated scene in a popular late novel by Victor Hugo:

You can reason with a bull dog, astonish a bull, fascinate a boa, frighten a tiger, soften a lion; no resource with such a monster as a loose cannon. You cannot kill it, it is dead; and at the same time it lives. It lives with a sinister life which comes from the infinite. It is moved by the ship, which is moved by the sea, which is moved by the wind. This exterminator is a plaything. [Victor Hugo, "Ninety Three," 1874]
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quarantine (n.)

1660s, "period a ship suspected of carrying contagious disease is kept in isolation," from Italian quaranta giorni, literally "space of forty days," from quaranta "forty," from Latin quadraginta"forty" (related to quattuor "four," from PIE root *kwetwer- "four").

The name is from the Venetian policy (first enforced in 1377) of keeping ships from plague-stricken countries waiting off its port for 40 days to assure that no latent cases were aboard. Also see lazaretto. The extended sense of "any period of forced isolation" is from 1670s.

Earlier in English the word meant "period of 40 days in which a widow has the right to remain in her dead husband's house" (1520s), and, as quarentyne (15c.), "desert in which Christ fasted for 40 days," from Latin quadraginta "forty."

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swab (n.)

1650s, "mop made of rope or yarn," used for cleaning the deck of a ship, etc., from swabber (c. 1600) "mop for cleaning a ship's deck," from Dutch zwabber, akin to West Frisian swabber "mop," from Proto-Germanic *swabb-, a word perhaps of imitative origin and denoting back-and-forth motion, especially in liquid.

Non-nautical meaning "anything used for mopping up" is from 1787; as "cloth or sponge on a handle to cleanse the mouth of the sick, etc.," from 1854. The slang meaning "a sailor" is attested by 1798, is short for swabber "member of a ship's crew assigned to swab decks" (1590s), which by c. 1600 was being used in a broader sense of "one who behaves like a low-ranking sailor, one fit only to use a swab."

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cutter (n.)

late 12c. as a surname, "one who cuts" in any sense, "one who shapes or forms by cutting," agent noun from cut (v.). From 1630s as "instrument or tool for cutting."

As a type of small, single-masted vessel, from 1762, earlier "double-banked boat belonging to a ship of war" (1745); perhaps so called from the notion of moving quickly, or of "cutting" through the water.

Revenue cutter, a light-armed government vessel commissioned for the prevention of smuggling and the enforcement of the customs regulations. Formerly the vessels for the protection of the United States revenue were cutter-rigged, but now the name is applied indiscriminately, although almost all the revenue vessels are steamers, and the few remaining sailing vessels are schooner-rigged. [Century Dictionary, 1889]
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