early 15c., "to take notice of" (a sense now obsolete), from Old French advertiss-, present participle stem of advertir (earlier avertir) "make aware, call attention, remark; turn, turn to" (12c.), from Latin advertere "to direct one's attention to; give heed," literally "to turn toward," from ad "to, toward" (see ad-) + vertere "to turn" (see versus).
Transitive sense "give notice to others, inform, warn" (late 15c.) by influence of advertisement; specific meaning "to call attention to goods for sale, rewards, etc." emerged by late 18c. Original meaning remains in advert (v.) "turn (someone's) attention to." Related: Advertised; advertising.