1550s (in imprecations, "a pest upon ____," etc.), "plague, pestilence," from Middle French peste (1530s), from Latin pestis "deadly contagious disease; a curse, bane," of uncertain origin. Meaning "noxious or troublesome person or thing" first recorded c.1600.
An injurious plant or animal, especially one harmful to humans.
A deadly epidemic disease; a pestilence.