late 14c., "emit from a confined space," probably a shortening of aventer "expose oneself to the air" (c. 1300), from Old French eventer "let out, expose to air," from Vulgar Latin *exventare, from Latin ex "out" + ventus "wind" (from PIE *wē-nt-o‑ "blowing," suffixed (participial) form of root *we- "to blow").
Sense of "express freely" first recorded 1590s. Sense of "divulge, publish" (1590s) is behind phrase vent one's spleen (see spleen). Related: Vented; venting.
c. 1400, "anus," from Old French vent from verb eventer (see vent (v.)) and in part from Middle English aventer, from the French verb. Perhaps also merged with or influenced by Middle English fent "opening or slit in a the front of a garment (usually held closed with a brooch)," c. 1400, from Old French fente, from Latin findere "to split" (from PIE root *bheid- "to split"). Meaning "outlet for water," also "air hole, breathing hole" is from mid-15c. Meaning "action of venting" is recorded from c. 1500.
"capacity for yielding to pressure," 1868, from give (v.). The Middle English noun yeve, meant "that which is given or offered; a contribution of money," often as tribute, or in expectation of something in return.
Old English giefan (West Saxon) "to give, bestow, deliver to another; allot, grant; commit, devote, entrust," class V strong verb (past tense geaf, past participle giefen), from Proto-Germanic *geban (source also of Old Frisian jeva, Middle Dutch gheven, Dutch geven, Old High German geban, German geben, Gothic giban), from PIE root *ghabh- "to give or receive." It became yiven in Middle English, but changed to guttural "g" by influence of Old Norse gefa "to give," Old Danish givæ.
Meaning "to yield to pressure" is from 1570s. Give in "yield" is from 1610s; give out is mid-14c. as "publish, announce;" meaning "run out, break down" is from 1520s. Give up "surrender, resign, quit" is mid-12c. To give (someone) a cold seems to reflect the old belief that one could be cured of disease by deliberately infecting others. What gives? "what is happening?" is attested from 1940. To not give a (some thing regarded as trivial and valueless) is from c. 1300 (early examples were a straw, a grass, a mite).
also giveaway, "act of giving away," 1872, from verbal phrase give away, c. 1400 (of brides from 1719); see give (v.) + away (adv.). The phrase in the meaning "to betray, expose, reveal" is from 1878, originally U.S. slang. Hence also Related: give-away (n.) "inadvertent betrayal or revelation" (1882).
1769, originally in horse-racing, referring to races in which bigger horses were given more weight to carry, lighter ones less; from give (v.) + take (v.). General sense attested by 1778. Give and take had been paired in expressions involving mutual exchange from c. 1500. Give or take as an indication of approximation is from 1958.
formerly also enveigh, late 15c., "to introduce," from Latin invehere "to bring in, carry in, introduce," also "assault, assail," from in- "against" (see in- (1)) + vehere "to carry" (from PIE root *wegh- "to go, move, transport in a vehicle"). Meaning "to give vent to violent denunciation" is from 1520s, from a secondary sense in Latin (see invective). Related: Inveighed; inveighing.
"a breathing hole or vent, channel for air," c. 1400, from Old French souspirail, from Latin suspiraclum, from suspirare "draw a deep breath" (see suspire).