"colleague, fellow member," mid-15c., from Old French confrere "brother, companion" (13c.), from Medieval Latin confrater, from assimilated form of com "together, with" (see con-) + frater "brother" (from PIE root *bhrater- "brother"). Probably lost in later 17c. and reborrowed 19c. from Modern French confrère.
bhrāter-, Proto-Indo-European root meaning "brother."
It forms all or part of: br'er; brethren; brother; bully (n.); confrere; fraternal; fraternity; fraternize; fratricide; friar; friary; pal.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit bhrátár-, Old Persian brata, Greek phratér, Latin frater, Old Irish brathir, Welsh brawd, Lithuanian broterėlis, Old Prussian brati, Old Church Slavonic bratru, Czech bratr, Polish brat, Russian bratŭ, Kurdish bera; Old English broþor, Old Norse broðir, German Bruder, Gothic bróþar.
"A word, app. of U.S. coinage, used to express the ideas of bewilderment or confusion, rapid stir and bustle, riotous jollity or intoxication, etc. Also, deception, fraud; extravagant publicity" [OED], 1886, American English slang, varied reduplication of dazzle (q.v.).
My confrère, The Chevalier, last month gave a new name to the scarfs of disjointed pattern when he called them the razzle-dazzle. The name was evidently a hit of the most patent character, for in several avenue and Broadway stores the clerks have thrown out a display of broken figures before me and explained that the ruling style at present was the razzle-dazzle, and the word seems to have been equally effective with the public, for when it is quoted by the live salesman, the customer, I am told is at once interested and caught by it. [Clothier and Furnisher magazine, January 1889]
Meaning "state of confusion" is from 1889.