"dotted, pointed, marked with dots," 1760, from Modern Latin punctuatus, from Latin punctum "a point" (from nasalized form of PIE root *peuk- "to prick"). Especially in biology, "having dots scattered over the surface." Related: Punctation.
early 13c., pik, pyk, "pointed tip or spike on a staff, pole, weapon, etc.," collateral (long-vowel) form of pic (source of pick (n.1)), from Old English piic "pointed object, pickaxe," which is perhaps from a Celtic source (compare Gaelic pic "pickaxe," Irish pice "pike, pitchfork"). The word probably has been influenced by, or is partly from, Old French pic "sharp point or spike," itself perhaps from Germanic (see pike (n.1)), Old Norse pic, and Middle Dutch picke, pecke. Pike, pick (n.1), and pitch (n.1) formerly were used indifferently in English.
From c. 1400 as "a sharp, pointed mountain or summit." The pike position in diving, gymnastics, etc., is attested by 1928, perhaps on the notion of "tapering to a point."
1580s, in astrology, "first entrance of a house in the calculation of a nativity," from Latin cuspis "point, spear, pointed end, head," which is of unknown origin. Astronomical sense is from 1670s, "point or horn of a crescent." Anatomical sense of "a prominence on the crown of a tooth" is from 1839.
Also formerly in English "a shivering," especially as a symptom of disease or in reaction to a sour or bitter taste (1530s); "erection of the hairs on the skin" (1650s); "a ruffling as of water surface" (1630s). As a genre in film, 1934. Chamber of horrors originally (1849) was a gallery of notorious criminals in Madame Tussaud's wax exhibition. Other noun forms are horribility (14c., now rare or disused), horribleness (late 14c.), horridity (1620s), horridness (1610s).
"long-pointed toe of a shoe," mid-15c., from Old French Poulaine, literally "Poland," hence "in the Polish fashion." The style was supposed in Western Europe to have originated there. Compare Cracow.