mid-14c., "misfortune, adversity;" late 14c., "grief, sorrow; discouragement," from Old French desconfort (12c.), from desconforter (v.), from des- (see dis-) + conforter "to comfort, to solace; to help, strengthen," from Late Latin confortare "to strengthen much" (used in Vulgate); see comfort (v.). Meaning "absence of comfort or pleasure, condition of being uncomfortable" is by 1841.
c. 1300, discomforten, "to deprive of courage," from Old French desconforter (Modern French déconforter), from des- (see dis-) + conforter "to comfort, to solace; to help, strengthen," from Late Latin confortare "to strengthen much" (used in Vulgate); see comfort (v.). Meaning "make uncomfortable or uneasy" is by 1856. Related: Discomforted; discomforting.
c. 1200, discomfiten, "to undo in battle, defeat, overthrow," from Anglo-French descomfiter, Old French desconfire "to defeat, destroy," from des- "not" (see dis-) + confire "make, prepare, accomplish," from Latin conficere "to prepare," from com- "with" (see com-) + combining form of facere "to make, to do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put").
General sense of "defeat or overthrow the plans or purposes of" is from late 14c. Weaker sense of "disconcert" is first recorded 1520s in English, probably by confusion with discomfort. Related: Discomfited; discomfiting.
early 14c., "discomfort, inconvenience, distress, trouble," from Old French desaise "lack, want; discomfort, distress; trouble, misfortune; disease, sickness," from des- "without, away" (see dis-) + aise "ease" (see ease (n.)). Restricted pathological sense of "sickness, illness" in English emerged by late 14c.; the word still sometimes was used in its literal sense early 17c., and was somewhat revived 20c., usually with a hyphen (dis-ease).
late 14c., "causing discomfort, dismal;" c. 1400, "unhappy, dejected, melancholy, wanting consolation or comfort," from Medieval Latin disconsolatus "comfortless," from Latin dis- "away" (see dis-) + consolatus, past participle of consolari "offer solace, encourage, comfort, cheer," from assimilated form of com-, here perhaps an intensive prefix (see com-), + solari "to comfort" (see solace (n.)). Related: Disconsolately; disconsolateness.
c. 1300, maleise "pain, suffering; sorrow, anxiety," also, by late 14c., "disease, sickness," from Old French malaise "difficulty, suffering, hardship," literally "ill-ease," from mal "bad" (see mal-) + aise "ease" (see ease (n.)). The current use, in the sense of "unease, discomfort," especially "an indefinite feeling of uneasiness," is perhaps a mid-18c. reborrowing from Modern French. A Middle English verbal form, malasen "to trouble, distress" (mid-15c.), from Old French malaisier, did not endure.
c. 1200, transitive, "to make worried or depressed; to make angry, enrage;" also "to be physically painful, cause discomfort;" c. 1300 as "cause grief to, disappoint, be a cause of sorrow;" also "injure, harass, oppress," from tonic stem of Old French grever "afflict, burden, oppress," from Latin gravare "make heavy; cause grief," from gravis "weighty" (from PIE root *gwere- (1) "heavy"). Intransitive sense of "be sorry, lament" is from c. 1400. Related: Grieved; grieving.
To [Dr. S. Weir Mitchel] also belongs the honor of having devised the method known as the "rest cure," which has proven so beneficial in a class of cases constituting an "opprobrium medicorum." He defines this class to be "chiefly women—nervous women, who as a rule are thin and lack blood"—treated in turn for gastric, spinal or uterine troubles, but who remained at the end, as at the beginning, invalids, unable to attend to the duties of life, and sources of discomfort to themselves and anxiety to others. [Chicago Medical Gazette, Jan. 20, 1880]