early 14c., proces, "fact of being carried on" (as in in process), from Old French proces "a journey; continuation, development; legal trial" (13c.) and directly from Latin processus "a going forward, advance, progress," from past-participle stem of procedere "go forward" (see proceed).
Meaning "course or method of action, continuous action or series of actions or events" is from mid-14c.; sense of "continuous and regular series of actions meant to accomplish some result" (the main modern sense) is from 1620s. Meaning "a projection from the main body of something," especially a natural appendage, is from 1570s. Legal sense of "course of action of a suit at law, the whole of the proceedings in any action at law" is attested from early 14c.; hence due process "fair treatment" at law, considered as a right (mid-15c.).
on the Great Seal of the United States of America, apparently an allusion to line 5 of Virgil's "Eclogue IV," in an 18c. edition: Magnus ab integro seclorum nascitur ordo "The great series of ages begins anew." The seal's designer, Charles Thomson, wrote that the words "signify the beginnings of the New American Era." (see Annuit Coeptis).
1927, in reference to a personality test in which the subject is shown a series of standard ink blots and describes what they suggest or resemble; named for its developer, Swiss psychiatrist Hermann Rorschach (1885-1922). The name of the town on the Swiss side of Lake Constance is from an early form of German Röhr "reeds" + Schachen "lakeside."
"drink laced with chloral hydrate," by 1918. Mickey Finn was used from the 1880s as the name of the main character in a series of popular humorous Irish-American stories published by New York Sun staff writer Ernest Jarrold (1848-1912), who sometimes also used it as his pen-name. Perhaps there is a connection.
"series of people or things in a more or less straight line," Middle English reue, from late Old English reawe, rewe, earlier ræw "a row, line; succession, hedge-row," probably from Proto-Germanic *rai(h)waz (source also of Middle Dutch rie, Dutch rij "row;" Old High German rihan "to thread," riga "line;" German Reihe "row, line, series;" Old Norse rega "string"), which is possibly from PIE root *rei- "to scratch, tear, cut" (source also of Sanskrit rikhati "scratches," rekha "line").
The meaning "a number of houses in a line" is attested from mid-14c., according to OED chiefly Scottish and northern English. The meaning "line of seats in a theater" is by 1710. The meaning "line of plants in a field or garden" is by 1733, hence the figurative phrase hard row to hoe attested from 1823, American English.
c. 1400, ordinacioun, "divine decree;" early 15c., "arrangement, putting in order," also "the act of admitting to holy orders or the Christian ministry" (the main surviving sense), from Old French ordinacion (12c.) or directly from Latin ordinationem (nominative ordinatio) "a setting in order, ordinance," noun of action from past participle stem of ordinare "to put in order, arrange, dispose, appoint," from ordo (genitive ordinis) "row, rank, series, arrangement" (see order (n.)).
"a bitter invective discourse, a denunciation," 1590s, from French philippique, from Latin (orationes) Philippicæ, a translation of Greek Philippikoi (logoi), referrimg to the series of orations made in Athens by Demosthenes in 351-341 B.C.E. urging Greeks to awaken to their danger and unite to fight the rising power of Philip II of Macedon, father of Alexander the Great. The Latin phrase was used of the speeches made by Cicero against Marc Antony in 44 and 43 B.C.E.
early 15c., "series or collection of comments," from Medieval Latin commentarius "notebook, annotation; diary, memoir," noun use of adjective, "relating to comments," from Late Latin commentum ""comment, interpretation" (see comment (n.)). Perhaps the Medieval Latin noun is short for volumen commentarium. Especially "explanation of difficult and obscure passages in a book or other writing" (1530s). Meaning "historical narrative" is from c. 1600. Meaning "description of some public event" is from 1927.