The weakened or transferred meaning "to trouble in body or mind, harass, distress," is attested from 1530s. Related: Afflicted; afflicting.
early 15c., "to contend, fight, struggle," from Latin conflictus, past participle of confligere "to strike together, be in conflict," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + fligere "to strike" (see afflict). Meaning "be in opposition, be contrary or at variance" is from 1640s. Related: Conflicted; conflicting.
1520s, "overthrown, routed, defeated, conquered" (now obsolete in this sense), from Latin profligatus "destroyed, ruined, corrupt, abandoned, dissolute," past participle of profligare "to cast down, defeat, ruin," from pro "down, forth" (see pro-) + fligere "to strike" (see afflict).
The main modern meaning "recklessly extravagant" is attested by 1779, via the notion of "ruined in morals, abandoned to vice" (1640s, implied in a use of profligation, an obsolete word attested from mid-15c. but first in a sense of "elimination, banishment"). Related: Profligately. As a noun, "one who has lost all regard for good principles," from 1709.
c. 1300, affliccioun, "misery, sorrow, pain, distress" (originally especially "self-inflicted pain, self-mortification, religious asceticism"), from Old French afliction "act of humility, humiliation, mortification, punishment" (11c.) and directly from Latin afflictionem (nominative afflictio), noun of action from past-participle stem of affligere "to dash down, overthrow," from ad "to" (see ad-) + fligere (past participle flictus) "to strike" (see afflict). Meaning "a cause of constant pain or sorrow" is from 1590s.
"I know, O Lord [says the Psalmist] that thy judgments are right, and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me;" the furnace of affliction being meant but to refine us from our earthly drossiness, and soften us for the impression of Gods own stamp and image. [Robert Boyle, "Seraphic Love," 1663]
early 15c., "armed encounter, battle," from Old French conflit and directly from Latin conflictus "a striking together," in Late Latin "a fight, conflict," noun use of past participle of confligere "to strike together, be in conflict," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + fligere "to strike" (see afflict).
Meaning "a struggle, a quarrel" is from mid-15c. Sense of "discord of action, feeling, or effect, clashing of opposed principles, etc." is from 1875. Psychological sense of "incompatible urges in one person" is from 1859 (hence conflicted, past-participle adjective); the noun was used from 15c. in the sense "internal mental or spiritual struggle" (against temptation, etc.). Phrase conflict of interest was in use by 1743.
"to contract, afflict with spasms" (of muscles), early 15c., from cramp (n.1). Related: Cramped; cramping.