Etymology
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bathing (n.)

1540s, verbal noun from bathe (v.). Bathing suit is recorded from 1852 (bathing costume from 1830); bathing beauty is from 1891, in reference to Frederick Leighton's "The Bath of Venus."

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bathe (v.)

Middle English bathen, from Old English baþian "to wash, lave, place in a bath, take a bath" (transitive and intransitive), from the source of bath (q.v.), with different vowel sound due to i-mutation. Related: Bathed; bathing. Similar verbs in Old Norse baða, Old High German badon, German baden.

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lavation (n.)

"act of washing, a cleansing," 1620s, from Latin lavationem (nominative lavatio) "a bathing, bath, bathing apparatus," noun of action from past-participle stem of lavare "to wash" (from PIE root *leue- "to wash"). Related: Lavations.

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tank top (n.)

1968, from tank suit "one-piece bathing costume" (1920s), so called because it was worn in a swimming tank (n.), i.e. pool.

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sun (v.)

1510s, "to set something in the sun," from sun (n.). Intransitive meaning "expose oneself to the sun" is recorded from c. 1600. Sun-bathing is attested from c. 1600.

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balneal (adj.)

"pertaining to baths," 1640s, with -al (1) + Latin balneum "bath," from Greek balaneion "warm bath, bathing room," which is of unknown origin. Balneography (1841) is the description of baths and medicinal springs.

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bidet (n.)

1620s, "small horse," from French bidet (16c.), a word of unknown etymology. Originally in French "a small horse, a pony," thus "a vessel on a low narrow stand, which can be bestridden for bathing purposes," a sense attested in English from 1766.

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pyelo- 

before vowels pyel-, medical word-forming element used from mid-19c. in forming medical terms, from Greek pyelos "oblong trough, bathing-tub," a word of uncertain etymology, taken in modern scientific use for "pelvis."

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Actaeon 

in Greek mythology, the name of the hunter who discovered Artemis bathing and was changed by her to a stag and torn to death by his hounds. The name is of unknown origin. Sometimes used figuratively in 17c. for "a cuckold" (because of his "horns").

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