interfere (v.)

formerly also enterfere, mid-15c., enterferen, "intermingle or mix (different things), interpose," also "to interfere," from Old French enterferer "exchange blows, strike each other," from entre- "between" (see entre-) + ferir "to strike," from Latin ferire "to knock, strike," related to Latin forare "to bore, pierce" (from PIE root *bhorh- "hole"). Compare punch (v.), which has both the senses "to hit" and "to make a hole in").

Figurative sense of "to meddle with, oppose unrightfully" is from 1630s. Related: Interfered; interfering. Modern French interférer is from English.

updated on December 08, 2020