mid-15c., "a curse, cursing," from Latin imprecationem (nominative imprecatio) "an invoking of evil," noun of action from past participle stem of imprecari "invoke, pray, call down upon," from assimilated form of in- "into, in, within" (from PIE root *en "in") + precari "to pray, ask, beg, request" (from PIE root *prek- "to ask, entreat"). "Current limited sense is characteristic of human nature" [Weekley].
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to ask, entreat."
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit prasna-, Avestan frashna- "question;" Sanskrit prcchati, Avestan peresaiti "interrogates;" Latin precari "ask earnestly, beg, entreat;" Old Church Slavonic prositi, Lithuanian prašyti "to ask, beg;" Old High German frahen, German fragen, Old English fricgan "to ask" a question.
as an intensive execration, "odious, detestable, damned," 1650s, past-participle adjective from confound in its older sense of "condemn, curse," which came to be considered "a milder form of imprecation" [OED]. It is perhaps a euphemism for damned. The sense of "put to mental confusion" is recorded from mid-14c.
c. 1300, dampnacioun, "condemnation to Hell by God," also "fact of being condemned by judicial sentence," from Old French damnation, from Latin damnationem (nominative damnatio), noun of action from past-participle stem of damnare "to doom, condemn" (see damn). As an imprecation, attested from c. 1600.
Damnation follows death in other men,
But your damn'd Poet lives and writes agen.
[Pope, letter to Henry Cromwell, 1707 or 1708]
"confoundedly" 1833, later also as an adjective (1840), from past participle of blame (v.), as a "euphemistic evasion of the horrible word damn." [Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1848].
This adjective 'blamed' is the virtuous oath by which simple people, who are improving their habits, cure themselves of a stronger epithet. [Edward Everett Hale, "If, Yes, and Perhaps," 1868]
Compare also blamenation (1837) as an expletive. The imprecation blame me is attested from 1830.
1826, "supply with a wig," from wig (n.). The earlier verb was bewig (see bewigged). The meaning "to behave hysterically" (usually with out) is attested from 1955, perhaps from notion in flip one's wig. Compare dash my wig!, a former mild imprecation (1797), also wigs on the green (1856), Irish colloquial for "a fight or rumble" (because wigs are likely to get detached from owners in such an event). The verb also had a colloquial sense of "scold severely," attested by 1829, perhaps related to these. Related: Wigged; wigging.
c. 1300, "reject, spurn, decline" a request, demand, invitation, etc.; also intransitive, "to make refusal;" from Old French refuser "reject, disregard, avoid" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *refusare, a frequentative verb from the past-participle stem of Latin refundere "give back, restore, return," literally "pour back, flow back," from re- "back" (see re-) + fundere "to pour" (from nasalized form of PIE root *gheu- "to pour").
The intransitive meaning "refuse to do something" is from late 14c.; that of "fail to comply" is from 1520s (originally of horses); that of "repudiate, disown, disavow" is attested from early 15c. but now is obsolete. Nares reports that God refuse me! was "formerly a fashionable imprecation." Related: Refused; refusing.
O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?
Deny thy father and refuse thy name;
tame curse word, 1781, American English euphemism, a minced form of damn said to have originated in New England when swearing was a punishable offense; if so, its spread probably was influenced by 'tarnal, short for Eternal, as in By the Eternal (God), favorite exclamation of Andrew Jackson, among others (see tarnation). Mark Twain (who spells it dern) writes “this imprecation is a favorite one out in the ranching districts, and is generally used in the society of ladies, where a mild firm of expressionomy may be indulged in” (San Francisco, 1865). Related: darned (as a past-participle adjective, 1806); darndest (superlative, 1844), darnation (noun of action, 1798).
"move air, produce a current of air," Old English blawan "to blow (of the wind, bellows, etc.), breathe, make an air current; kindle; inflate; sound (a wind instrument)" (class VII strong verb; past tense bleow, past participle blawen), from Proto-Germanic *blæ-anan (source of Old High German blaen, German blähen), from PIE root *bhle- "to blow."
Transitive sense of "carry by a wind or current of air" is from c. 1300; that of "to fill with air, inflate" is from late 14c. Of noses from 1530s; of electrical fuses from 1902. Meaning "to squander" (money) is from 1874; meaning "lose or bungle (an opportunity, etc.) is by 1943. Sense of "depart (some place) suddenly" is from 1902. For sexual sense, see blow-job.
As a colloquial imprecation by 1781, associated with sailors (as in Popeye's "well, blow me down!"); it has past participle blowed.
To blow (a candle, etc.) out "extinguish by a current of air" is from late 14c. To blow over "pass" is from 1610s, originally of storms. To blow hot and cold "vacillate" is from 1570s. To blow off steam (1837) is a figurative use from steam engines releasing pressure. Slang blow (someone or something) off "dismiss, ignore" is by 1986. To blow (someone's) mind was in use by 1967; there is a song title "Blow Your Mind" released in a 1965 Mirawood recording by a group called The Gas Company.