1560s, "a circular motion," from Latin gyrus "circle, circular course, round, ring," from Greek gyros "a circle, ring," related to gyrós "rounded," perhaps from PIE root *geu- "to bend, curve" (source also of Armenian kor "crooked," Lithuanian gurnas "hip, ankle, bone," Norwegian kaure "a curly lock of hair"). The noun is attested in Middle English only in reference to ship's tackle (early 15c.).
mid-15c., "turn (something) away (from something else); rotate" (transitive), "cause to revolve;" also "go in a circle, turn round" (intransitive), from Old French girer and directly from Latin gyrare, verb derived from gyrus "circle, circular course, round, ring" (see gyre (n.)). Related: Gyred; gyring.
updated on October 14, 2021