c. 1200, spelling alteration of Old English dragan "to drag, to draw, protract" (class VI strong verb; past tense drog, past participle dragen), from Proto-Germanic *dragan "to draw, pull" (source also of Old Norse draga "to draw," Old Saxon dragan, Old Frisian draga, Middle Dutch draghen, Old High German tragen, German tragen "to carry, bear"), from PIE root *dhragh- (see drag (v.)). Sense of "make a line or figure" (by "drawing" a pencil across paper) is c. 1200. Meaning "pull out a weapon" is c. 1200. To draw a criminal (drag him from a horse to place of execution) is from early 14c. To draw a blank "come up with nothing" (1825) is an image from lotteries. As a noun, from 1660s; colloquial sense of "anything that can draw a crowd" is from 1881 (the verb in this sense is 1580s).
game or contest that ends without a winner, attested first in drawn match (1610s), of uncertain origin; some speculate it is from withdraw. Draw-game is from 1825. As a verb, "to leave undecided," from 1837.