early 15c., "mounted military expedition," Scottish and northern English form of rade "a riding, journey," from Old English rad "a riding, ride, expedition, journey; raid," (see road). The word fell into obscurity by 17c., but it was revived by Scott ("The Lay of the Last Minstrel," 1805; "Rob Roy," 1818), with a more extended sense of "attack, foray, hostile or predatory incursion." By 1873 of any sudden or vigorous descent (police raids, etc.). Of air raids by 1908.
updated on November 17, 2021