"defeated" (c.1300), "wasted, spent in vain," c.1500; also "no longer to be found" (1526), from the pp. of lose (q.v.). Lost Cause in ref. to the Southern U.S. bid for independence is from the title of E.A. Pollard's history of the CSA and the rebellion (1866). Lost Generation in ref. to the period 1914-18 first attested 1926 in Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises," where he credits it to Gertrude Stein.