1866, originally in reference to surfaces such as shell casings of beetle wings, from French aéroplane (1855), from Greek-derived aero- "air" (see air (n.1)) + stem of French planer "to soar," from Latin planus "level, flat" (from PIE root *pele- (2) "flat; to spread").
The word was later extended to the wing of a heavier-than-air flying machine. The use of the word in reference to the machine itself is first attested 1873 and probably is an independent coinage in English. Also see airplane. Ancient Greek had a word aeroplanos, but it meant "wandering in the air," from planos "wandering" (see planet).
1864, named for its designer, U.S. inventor Richard Jordan Gatling (1818-1903); patented by 1862 but not used in American Civil War until the Petersburg campaign of June 1864 as an independent initiative by U.S. Gen. Ben Butler.
For the first time in this war, the Gatling gun was used by Butler in repelling one of Beauregard's midnight attacks. Dispatches state that it was very destructive, and rebel prisoners were very curious to know whether it was loaded all night and fired all day. [Scientific American, June 18, 1864]
1806, "pertaining to a division of a larger part;" see section (n.) + -al (1). Originally and especially "of or pertaining to some particular section or region of a country as distinct from others," in which sense it loomed large in the U.S. political vocabulary in the decades before the Civil War.
The meaning "composed or made up of several independent sections that fit together" is by 1875, originally mechanical. The noun meaning "piece of furniture composed of sections which can be used separately" is attested by 1961, short for sectional seat, sectional sofa, etc. (1949).
1846, "one who theoretically rejects and ignores all forms of religion based on revelation;" see secularism + -ist. More specifically by 1851 as "one who maintains that public education and civil policy should be conducted without the introduction of a religious element."
The religionist is noticeably the slave of inherited associations, and always thinks, more or less, within the fetters of the Bible. The Secularist, standing on independent grounds, determines for himself what should be the attitude of man towards the Infinite Personality on the part of those discerning His existence. [George Jacob Holyoake, "Secularism Distinguished from Unitarianism," 1855]
Earlier as "one of the secular clergy" (1716). Related: Secularistic.
Related Middle English swive was the principal slang verb for "to have sexual intercourse with," a sense that developed c. 1300. This probably explains why, though the root is verbal, the verb swivel is not attested in Modern English until 1794. Compare Middle English phrase smal-swivinge men "men who copulate infrequently."
Esprit de corps, recorded from 1780 in English, preserves the usual French sense. French also has the excellent phrase esprit de l'escalier, literally "spirit of the staircase," defined in OED as, "a retort or remark that occurs to a person after the opportunity to make it has passed." It also has esprit fort, a "strong-minded" person, one independent of current prejudices, especially a freethinker in religion.