1550s, "a castaway" (rare), from reject (v.). Modern use probably a re-formation of the same word: "thing cast aside as unsatisfactory" (1893); "person considered low-quality and worthless" (1925, from use in militaries).
early 15c., from Old French rejecter and directly from Latin reiectus, past participle of reiectare "throw away, cast away, vomit," frequentative of reicere "to throw back," from re- "back" (see re-) + -icere, combining form of iacere "to throw" (from PIE root *ye- "to throw, impel"). Related: Rejected; rejecting.
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