"bore through, pierce, make a hole or holes in," late 15c. (implied in perforated), a back-formation from perforation or else from Latin perforatus, past participle of perforare "to bore through, pierce through," from per "through" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward," hence "through") + forare "to pierce" (from PIE root *bhorh- "hole"). Related: Perforating.
It forms all or part of: bore (v.1) "to drill through, perforate;" Boris; burin; foramen; Foraminifera; foraminous; interfere; interference; perforate; perforation.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek pharao "I plow;" Latin ferire "to knock, strike," forare "to bore, pierce;" Lithuanian barti "to scold, accuse, forbid;" Old Church Slavonic barjo "to strike, fight," brati "to fight," Russian borot "to overpower;" Albanian brime "hole;" Old English borian "to bore through, perforate," Old Norse berja "to beat, hit," Old High German berjan "to hit, pound, knead."
"the sponges," as an animal division or class, 1843, Modern Latin, literally "bearing pores," neuter plural of porifer, from Latin porus "pore, opening" (see pore (n.)) + -fer "bearing" (from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry"). So called for the numerous pores which perforate the body-wall. Related: Poriferal; poriferous.
"perforate (something) all over with many holes," 1817 (implied in riddled), earlier "sift, pass (grain) through a riddle" (early 13c.), from Middle English ridelle "coarse sieve," from late Old English hriddel "sieve," which is altered by dissimilation from Old English hridder "sieve" (see riddle (n.2)). The notion is of making something (later someone) resemble a riddle.
1680s, originally "to seize with the pounces," from Middle English pownse (n.) "hawk's claw" (see pounce (n.1)). The earlier verb sense was "perforate, make holes in" (late 14c.). Meaning "to jump or fall upon suddenly" is from 1812. Figurative sense of "lay hold of eagerly" is from 1840. Related: Pounced; pouncing. A doublet of punch (v.).
early 14c., "to pierce, penetrate," metathesis of Old English þyrlian "to perforate, pierce," from þyrel "hole" (in Middle English, also "nostril"), from þurh "through" (compare Middle High German dürchel "pierced, perforated;" from PIE root *tere- (2) "cross over, pass through, overcome") + -el. Meaning "give a shivering, exciting feeling" is first recorded 1590s, via metaphoric notion of "pierce with emotion." Related: Thrilled; thrilling.
"animal of the lowest order of mammals," native to Australia and New Zealand, which have one opening for the genital, urinary, and digestive organs, 1833, from Monotremata, the order name, Modern Latin, neuter plural of monotrematus, from Greek monos "single, alone" (see mono-) + stem of trēma "perforation, hole, opening; eye of a needle, dot on dice," related to tetrainein "to bore through, perforate" (from PIE root *tere- (1) "to rub, turn"). Related: Monotrematous.
also purpoint, "something quilted," used especially of garments worn by men late 14c.-15c., early 15c., from Old French porpoint, noun use of the past participle of porpoindre "to perforate," from *por-, a Vulgar Latin variant of Latin pro- (itself here a substitute for per- "through") + poindre "to stab, pierce with a pointed object, from Latin pungere "to prick" (from suffixed form of PIE root *peuk- "to prick").
Not to be confused with pour-point "temperature below which an oil is too viscous to be poured" (by 1932).