c.1300, from Anglo-Fr. avoider
"to clear out, withdraw (oneself)," from O.Fr. esvuidier
"to empty out," from es-
"out" + vuidier
"to be empty," from voide
"empty, vast, wide, hollow, waste" (see void
). Originally a law term; modern sense of "have nothing to do with" also was in M.E. and corresponds to O.Fr. eviter
with which it was perhaps confused. Meaning "escape, evade" first attested 1520s.