a part separated from adjoining parts by a partition," "1560s, from French compartiment "part partitioned off" (16c.), through Italian compartimento, from Late Latin compartiri "to divide," from com-, here probably as an intensive prefix (see com-), + partis, genitive of pars "a part, piece, a share, a division" (from PIE root *pere- (2) "to grant, allot").
*perə-, Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to grant, allot" (and reciprocally, "to get in return"); possibly related to *pere- (1) "to produce, procure."
It forms all or part of: apart; apartment; bipartient; bipartisan; bipartite; compartment; depart; department; ex parte; impart; jeopardy; multipartite; parcel; parse; part; partial; participate; participation; particle; particular; particulate; partisan; partition; partitive; partner; party; portion; proportion; quadripartite; repartee; tripartite.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit purtam "reward;" Hittite parshiya- "fraction, part;" Greek peprotai "it has been granted;" Latin partem (nominative pars) "a part, piece," portio "share, portion."
1834, "low, short, four-wheeled, close carriage without the front seat, carrying two inside, with an outside seat for the driver," also "front compartment of a stage coach," from French coupe (18c.), short for carrosse coupe "cut-off carriage," a shorter version of the Berlin, minus the back seat, from couper "to cut (in half);" see coup. Applied to closed two-door automobiles by 1897. Coup de ville is from 1931, originally a car with an open driver's position and an enclosed passenger compartment.
also pigeonhole, 1570s as "a small recess for pigeons to nest in," from pigeon + hole (n.); later "hole in a dovecote for pigeons to pass in and out" (1680s). Extended meaning "a little compartment or division in a writing desk," etc. is from 1680s, based on resemblance. Hence, "an ideal compartment for classification of persons, etc." (by 1879). The verb is from 1840, "place or file away in a pigeon-hole." The figurative sense of "lay aside for future consideration" is by 1854, that of "label mentally" by 1870.
[Y]ou will have an inspector after you with note-book and ink-horn, and you will be booked and pigeon-holed for further use when wanted. ["Civilisation—The Census," Blackwood's Magazine, Oct. 1854]