Paris underground, 1904, from French abbreviation of Chemin de Fer Métropolitain "Metropolitan Railway" (see metropolitan (adj.)). French chemin de fer "railroad" is literally "iron road." Construction began in 1898.
Middle English shunnen, "keep out of the way of, avoid (a person or place); refrain from, neglect (a practice or behavior)," from Old English scunian "run away from, avoid; abhor, loathe; seek safety by concealment," a word of uncertain origin; according to OED not found in other Germanic languages. Perhaps it is ultimately from PIE root *skeu- "to cover, to hide." Related: Shunned; shunning. A shun-pike (American English, by 1805 as a name of a road in New York) was a road constructed to avoid tolls.
"material of which macadamized pavement is made," 1826, earlier as an adjective (1824), named for its inventor, Scottish civil engineer John L. McAdam (1756-1836), who developed a method of leveling roads and paving them with gravel and outlined the process in his pamphlet "Remarks on the Present System of Road-Making" (1822). Originally the word meant road material consisting of a solid mass of stones of nearly uniform size laid down in layers (McAdam did not approve of the use of binding materials or rollers). The idea of mixing tar with the gravel began 1880s.
Old English stret (Mercian, Kentish), stræt (West Saxon) "street, high road," from Late Latin strata, used elliptically for via strata "paved road," from fem. past participle of Latin sternere "lay down, spread out, pave," from PIE *stre-to- "to stretch, extend," from root *stere- "to spread, extend, stretch out," from nasalized form of PIE root *stere- "to spread."
One of the few words in use in England continuously from Roman times. An early and widespread Germanic borrowing (Old Frisian strete, Old Saxon strata, Middle Dutch strate, Dutch straat, Old High German straza, German Strasse, Swedish stråt, Danish sträde "street"). The Latin is also the source of Spanish estrada, Old French estrée, Italian strada.
"The normal term in OE for a paved way or Roman road, later extended to other roads, urban streets, and in SE dialects to a street of dwellings, a straggling village or hamlet" [Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names]. Originally of Roman roads (Watling Street, Icknield Street). "In the Middle Ages, a road or way was merely a direction in which people rode or went, the name street being reserved for the made road" [Weekley].
Used since c. 1400 to mean "the people in the street;" modern sense of "the realm of the people as the source of political support" dates from 1931. The street for an especially important street is from 1560s (originally of London's Lombard-street). Man in the street "ordinary person, non-expert" is attested from 1831. Street people "the homeless" is from 1967; expression on the street "homeless" is from 1852. Street smarts is from 1971; street-credibility is from 1979. Street-sweeper as an occupation is from 1848.
"a drain of brickwork or masonry under a road, railroad, etc.," 1773, origin unknown; OED calls it "A recent word of obscure origin." Perhaps, as Weekley suggested long ago, it is the name of a long-forgotten engineer or bridge-builder.
1550s, "the act of guiding or escorting for protection," from obsolete verb convoy "to accompany on the way for protection" (late 14c.), from Old French convoiier, from Vulgar Latin *conviare, literally "go together on the road," from assimilated form of Latin com "with, together" (see con-) + via "way, road" (from PIE root *wegh- "to go, move, transport in a vehicle").
Compare convey. The meaning "an escort, an accompanying and protecting force" is from 1590s; sense transferred by c. 1600 to "train of ships or wagons carrying munitions or provisions in wartime under protection of escort."
1735, "one who lives in a swampy district," from swamp (n.). Meaning "workman who clears a lumber road through swamp or forest" is 1857, American English; meaning "all-purpose assistant in a restaurant or saloon" is from 1907.