"sudden pitch to one side," 1819 (in Byron's "Don Juan"), from earlier lee-larch (1769), a nautical term for "sudden violent roll to leeward which a ship often takes in a high sea," perhaps from Fr. lacher "to let go," from L. laxus (see lax).
"predicament," 1584, from M.E. lurch (v.) "to beat in a game of skill (often by a great many points)," c.1350, probably lit. "to make a complete victory in lorche," a game akin to backgammon, from O.Fr. lourche. The game name is perhaps related to M.E. lurken, lorken "to lie hidden, lie in ambush," or it may be adopted into Fr. from M.H.G. lurz "left," also "wrong."