gourd fruit, 1640s, shortened borrowing from Narraganset (Algonquian) askutasquash, literally "the things that may be eaten raw," from askut "green, raw, uncooked" + asquash "eaten," in which the -ash is a plural affix (compare succotash).
1610s, "act of squashing," from squash (v.). The racket game called by that name 1899; earlier (1886) it was the name of the soft rubber ball used in it.
1915 in English cookery books, 1910 in travel books about Italy as an Italian word (defined as "an odd kind of little squash, very tender and palatable"), from Italian, plural of zucchino, diminutive of zucca "gourd, squash," perhaps from Late Latin cucutia, which is of unknown origin.
1640s, probably a variant of squash (v.), perhaps by influence of obsolete squiss "to squeeze or crush" (1550s). Related: Squished; squishing.
kind of sweet cake or bun made of fine flour, c. 1200, from Old French simenel "fine wheat flour; flat bread cake, Lenten cake," probably by dissimilation from Vulgar Latin *siminellus (also source of Old High German semala "the finest wheat flour," German Semmel "a roll"), a diminutive of Latin simila "fine flour" (see semolina). In England especially as a gift offered on certain holidays, but in America a type of squash.
Middle English akorn, from Old English æcern "nut, mast of trees, acorn," a common Germanic word (cognates: Old Norse akarn, Dutch aker, Low German ecker "acorn," German Ecker, Gothic akran "fruit"), originally the mast of any forest tree. It is by most sources said to be related to Proto-Germanic *akraz, the source of Old English æcer "open land," Gothic akrs "field," Old French aigrun "fruits and vegetables" (from Frankish or some other Germanic source), perhaps on the notion of "fruit of the open or unenclosed land;" see acre.
The sense was gradually restricted in Low German, Scandinavian, and English to the most important of the forest produce for feeding swine: the mast of the oak tree. The regular modern form would be *akern; the current spelling emerged 15c.-16c. by folk etymology association with oak (Old English ac) and corn (n.1), neither of which has anything to do with it. Acorn squash is attested by 1937.
by c. 1200 as an emphatic form of Old English of (see of), employed in the adverbial use of that word. The prepositional meaning "away from" and the adjectival sense of "farther" were not firmly fixed in this variant until 17c., but once they were they left the original of with the transferred and weakened senses of the word. Meaning "not working" is from 1861.
Off the cuff "extemporaneously, without preparation" (1938) is from the notion of speaking from notes written in haste on one's shirt cuffs. In reference to clothing, off the rack (adj.) "not tailored, not made to individual requirements, ready-made" is by 1963, on the notion of buying it from the rack of a clothing store; off the record "not to be publicly disclosed" is from 1933; off the wall "crazy" is 1968, probably from the notion of a lunatic "bouncing off the walls" or else in reference to carom shots in squash, handball, etc.