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jettison

[jet-uh-suh n, -zuh n]
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verb (used with object)
  1. to cast (goods) overboard in order to lighten a vessel or aircraft or to improve its stability in an emergency.
  2. to throw off (something) as an obstacle or burden; discard.
  3. Cards. to discard (an unwanted card or cards).
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noun
  1. the act of casting goods from a vessel or aircraft to lighten or stabilize it.
  2. jetsam.
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Origin of jettison

1375–1425; late Middle English jetteson < Anglo-French; Old French getaisonLatin jactātiōn- (stem of jactātiō) jactation
Related formsjet·ti·son·a·ble, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for jettison

jettison

verb -sons, -soning or -soned (tr)
  1. to throw away; abandonto jettison old clothes
  2. to throw overboard
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noun
  1. another word for jetsam (def. 1)
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Word Origin

C15: from Old French getaison, ultimately from Latin jactātiō a tossing about; see jactation
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for jettison

v.

1848, from jettison (n.) "act of throwing overboard" to lighten a ship. This noun was an 18c. Marine Insurance writers' restoration of the earlier form and original sense of the 15c. word that had become jetsam, probably because jetsam had taken on a sense of "things cast overboard" and an unambiguous word was needed for "act of throwing overboard."

Middle English jetteson (n.) "act of throwing overboard" is from Anglo-French getteson, from Old French getaison "act of throwing (goods overboard)," especially to lighten a ship in distress, from Late Latin iactionem (nominative iactatio) "act of throwing," noun of action from past participle stem of iectare "toss about" (see jet (v.)). Related: Jettisoned.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper