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Old English Gota (plural Gotan) "a Goth" (see Gothic). In 19c., in reference to living persons, it meant "a Gothicist" (1812), "an admirer of the Gothic style, especially in architecture." Modern use as an adjective in reference to a subculture style is from 1986, short for Gothic.
By 1982, when the legendary Batcave club opened in London, the music press had begun to use the term gothic rock to describe the music and fandom around which a new postpunk subculture was forming. [Lauren M.E. Goodlad & Michael Bibby, "Goth: Undead Subculture," 2007]