"opening, entrance," Old English geat (plural geatu) "gate, door, opening, passage, hinged framework barrier," from Proto-Germanic *gatan (cf. Old Norse gat "opening, passage," Old Saxon gat "eye of a needle, hole," Old Frisian gat "hole, opening," Dutch gat "gap, hole, breach," German Gasse "street"), of unknown origin. Meaning "money collected from selling tickets" dates from 1896 (short for gate money, 1820). Gate-crasher is from 1927. Finnish katu, Lettish gatua "street" are Germanic loan-words.
"provide with a gate," 1906, from gate (n.). Originally of moulds. Related: Gated (1620s). Gated community recorded by 1989 (earliest reference to Emerald Bay, Laguna Beach, Calif.
To discharge, jilt, or eject someone: After the last goof, they gave him the gate (1918+)
GIVE someone THE GATE (1940s+)
[musicians' senses fr the simile swing like a gate, ''play or respond to swing music well and readily,'' with some influence of 'gator and alligator; or perhaps fr gatemouth, a nickname for Louis Armstrong; first musical sense said to have been coined by Louis Armstrong]