Etymology
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flog (v.)
1670s, slang, of uncertain origin. Perhaps a schoolboy shortening of Latin flagellare "flagellate" (see flagellum); Century Dictionary suggests perhaps from a Low German word "of homely use, of which the early traces have disappeared." OED finds it presumably onomatopoeic. Figurative use from 1800. Related: Flogged; flogging.
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flogging (n.)
1793, verbal noun from flog (v.). Earlier in the same sense was floggation (1680s).
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cane (v.)
"to beat or flog with a walking stick," 1660s, from cane (n.). Related: Caned; caning.
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horse-whip (n.)
also horsewhip, 1690s, from horse (n.) + whip (n.). As a verb, "to flog with a horse-whip," from 1768. Related: Horse-whipped; horse-whipping.
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birch (v.)
"to flog," 1830, from the noun in the sense "bunch of birch twigs used for flogging" (1640s); see birch (n.). Related: Birched; birching.
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cat-o'-nine-tails (n.)

"nine pieces of knotted cord fastened to a handle and used to flog the bare back," 1690s, probably so called in reference to its "claws." It was a legal instrument of punishment in British Navy until 1881.

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lame (v.)

"to make lame," c. 1300, from Proto-Germanic *lamejanan (source also of Old Saxon lemon, Old Frisian lema, Dutch verlammen, German lähmen, Old Norse lemja "thrash, flog, beat; to lame, disable"), from the root of lame (adj.). Related: Lamed; laming.

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baste (v.3)
"beat with a stick, thrash," 1530s, perhaps from the cookery sense of baste (v.2) or from Old Norse beysta "to beat" or a similar Scandinavian source (such as Swedish basa "to beat, flog," bösta "to thump"), from Proto-Germanic *baut-sti-, from PIE root *bhau- "to strike."
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flay (v.)

Old English flean "to skin, to flay" (strong verb, past tense flog, past participle flagen), from Proto-Germanic *flahan (source also of Middle Dutch vlaen, Old High German flahan, Old Norse fla), from PIE root *pl(e)ik-, *pleik- "to tear, rend" (source also of Lithuanian plėšti "to tear"). Related: Flayed; flaying.

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bash (v.)
"to strike violently," 1640s, perhaps of Scandinavian origin, from Old Norse *basca "to strike" (cognate with or otherwise related to Swedish basa "to baste, whip, flog, lash," Danish baske "to beat, strike, cudgel"); or the whole group might be independently derived and echoic. Figurative sense of "abuse verbally or in writing" is from 1948. Related: Bashed; bashing.
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