"cat," 1520s, but probably much older than the record, perhaps imitative of the hissing sound commonly used to get a cat's attention. A conventional name for a cat in Germanic languages and as far off as Afghanistan; it is the root of the principal word for "cat" in Rumanian (pisica) and secondary words in Lithuanian (puž, word used for calling a cat), Low German (puus), Swedish dialect katte-pus, etc. Applied to a girl or woman from c. 1600, originally in a negative sense, implying unpleasant cat-like qualities; but by mid-19c. in affectionate use.
"the face" (but sometimes, especially in pugilism slang, "the mouth"), 1890, slang, from Irish pus "lip, mouth."
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