late 16c., "to float or be driven along by a current," from drift (n.). Transitive sense of "to drive in heaps" is from 1610s. Figurative sense of "be passive and listless" is from 1822. Related: Drifted; drifting. To drift apart "gradually lose mutual affection" is by 1859.
Old English net "open textile fabric tied or woven with a mesh for catching fish, birds, or wild animals alive; network; spider web," also figuratively, "moral or mental snare or trap," from Proto-Germanic *natjo- (source also of Old Saxon net, Old Frisian nette, Old Norse, Dutch net, Swedish nät, Old High German nezzi, German Netz, Gothic nati "net"), perhaps originally "something knotted," from PIE root *ned- "to bind, tie." But Boutkan says it has no clear IE etymology and implies it might be a substrate word.
From late Old English as "light, open woven fabric used as protection from annoying insects." From late 15c. as "light, open mesh bag for the hair."
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<a href="https://www.etymonline.com/word/drift-net">Etymology of drift-net by etymonline</a>
Harper, D. (n.d.). Etymology of drift-net. Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved $(datetime), from https://www.etymonline.com/word/drift-net