solicit (v.)

early 15c., soliciten, "to disturb, trouble," from Old French soliciter, solliciter (14c.), from Latin sollicitare "to disturb, rouse, trouble, harass; stimulate, provoke," from sollicitus "agitated," from sollus "whole, entire" (from PIE root *sol- "whole, well-kept") + citus "aroused," past participle of ciere "shake, excite, set in motion" (from PIE root *keie- "to set in motion"). Related: Solicited; soliciting.

The meaning "entreat, petition" is from 1520s. Meaning "to further (business affairs)" evolved mid-15c. from a French sense of "manage affairs." The sexual sense (often in reference to prostitutes) is attested from 1710, probably from a merger of the business sense and an earlier sense of "to court or beg the favor of" (a woman), attested from 1590s.

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Definitions of solicit from WordNet

solicit (v.)
make a solicitation or entreaty for something; request urgently or persistently;
My neighbor keeps soliciting money for different charities
Henry IV solicited the Pope for a divorce
Synonyms: beg / tap
solicit (v.)
make amorous advances towards;
Synonyms: woo / court / romance
solicit (v.)
approach with an offer of sexual favors;
The young man was caught soliciting in the park
he was solicited by a prostitute
Synonyms: hook / accost /
solicit (v.)
incite, move, or persuade to some act of lawlessness or insubordination;
He was accused of soliciting his colleagues to destroy the documents
solicit (v.)
make a solicitation or petition for something desired;
She is too shy to solicit