Etymology
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launch (n.1)
"a leap or a bound," mid-15c., from launch (v.). Meaning "place where a boat is launched" is from 1711. Meaning "the liftoff of a missile, spacecraft, etc." is from 1935. Launch pad attested from 1960.
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launch (v.)
c. 1300, "to rush, plunge, leap, start forth; to be set into sudden motion," from Old North French lancher, Old French lancier "to fling, hurl, throw, cast," from Late Latin lanceare "wield a lance," from Latin lancea "light spear" (see lance (n.)).

Meaning "to throw, hurl, let fly" is from mid-14c. Sense of "set (a boat) afloat" first recorded c. 1400, from notion of throwing it out on the water; generalized by 1600 to any sort of beginning. Related: Launched; launching.
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launch (n.2)
"large boat carried on a warship," 1690s, from Portuguese lancha "barge, launch," apparently from Malay (Austronesian) lancharan, from lanchar "quick, agile;" if so, the English spelling has been influenced by launch (v.).
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relaunch (v.)

also re-launch, "to launch again or anew," 1745, from re- "again" + launch (v.). Related: Relaunched; relaunching. As a noun from 1970, especially of commercial products and brands.

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scut (n.1)
"short, erect tail" (of a rabbit, hare, deer, etc.), 1520s; earlier "a hare" (mid-15c.), perhaps from Old Norse skjota "to shoot (with a weapon), launch, push, shove quickly" (compare Norwegian skudda "to shove, push"), from PIE root *skeud- "to shoot, chase, throw."
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skittish (adj.)
early 15c., "very lively, frivolous," perhaps from Scandinavian base *skyt- (stem of Old Norse skjota "to shoot, launch, move quickly"), from PIE root *skeud- "to shoot, chase, throw." Sense of "shy, nervous, apt to run" first recorded c. 1500, of horses. Related: Skittishly; skittishness.
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skitter (v.)
"to run rapidly," 1845, frequentative of skite "to dart, run quickly" (1721), perhaps from a Scandinavian source (compare Old Norse skjota "to shoot, launch, move quickly, avoid (a blow);" Norwegian dialectal skutla "glide rapidly"); see skittish. As a noun from 1905.
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playmate (n.)

1640s, "companion in play or amusement, playfellow," from play (v.) + mate (n.). The sexual sense is from 1954 and the launch of "Playboy" magazine. The earlier word was Middle English playfere (also playfeer, playpheer) with obsolete fere "companion."

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sputnik (n.)

"artificial satellite," extended from the name of the one launched by the Soviet Union Oct. 4, 1957, from Russian sputnik "satellite," literally "traveling companion" (in this use short for sputnik zemlyi, "traveling companion of the Earth") from Old Church Slavonic supotiniku, from Russian so-, s- "with, together" + put' "path, way," from Old Church Slavonic poti, from PIE *pent- "to tread, go" (see find (v.)) + agent suffix -nik.

The electrifying impact of the launch on the West can be gauged by the number of new formations in -nik around this time (the suffix had been present in a Yiddish context for at least a decade before); Laika, the stray dog launched aboard Sputnik 2 (Nov. 2, 1957), which was dubbed muttnik in the Detroit Free Press, etc. The rival U.S. satellite which failed to reach orbit in 1957 (because the Vanguard rocket blew up on the launch pad) derided as a kaputnik (in the Daytona Beach Morning Journal), a dudnik (Christian Science Monitor), a flopnik (Youngstown Vindicator, New York Times), a pffftnik (National Review), and a stayputnik (Vancouver Sun).

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silo (n.)
1835, from Spanish silo, traditionally derived from Latin sirum (nominative sirus), from Greek siros "a pit to keep corn in." "The change from r to l in Spanish is abnormal and Greek siros was a rare foreign term peculiar to regions of Asia Minor and not likely to emerge in Castilian Spain" [Barnhart]. Alternatively, the Spanish word is from a pre-Roman Iberian language word represented by Basque zilo, zulo "dugout, cave or shelter for keeping grain." Meaning "underground housing and launch tube for a guided missile" is attested from 1958.
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