late 15c., from Middle French scandaliser (12c.), from Church Latin scandalizare, from late Greek skandalizein "to make to stumble; tempt; give offense to (someone)," from skandalon (see scandal). Originally "make a public scandal of;" sense of "shock by doing something improper" first recorded 1640s. Dryden and Shakespeare use simple scandal as a verb. Related: Scandalized; scandalizing; scandalization.