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early 14c., "book setting forth the order of services in the Church," from Late Latin adjective ordinalis (see ordinal (adj.)).
late 14c., "regular, ordinary," from Old French ordinel and directly from Late Latin ordinalis ""showing order, denoting an order of succession," from Latin ordo (genitive ordinis) "row, series" (see order (n.)). Meaning "marking position in an order or series" is from 1590s.