welter (n.)

1590s, "confusion," from welter (v.). The meaning "confused mass" is first recorded 1851.

welter (v.)

"to roll or twist," early 14c., from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German welteren "to roll," from Proto-Germanic *waltijan (source also of Old English wieltan, Old Norse velta, Old High German walzan "to turn, revolve," German wälzen "to roll," Gothic waltjan "to roll"), from PIE root *wel- (3) "to turn, revolve." Related: Weltered; weltering.