1388, "walk heavily, stamp," from M.L.G. trampen
"to stamp," from P.Gmc. *tramp-
(cf. Dan. trampe
, Swed. trampa
"to tramp, stamp," Goth. ana-trimpan
"to press upon"), probably from a variant of the P.Gmc. source of trap
. The noun meaning "person who wanders about, vagabond" is first recorded 1664, from the verb. Sense of "steamship which takes cargo wherever it can be traded" (as opposed to one running a regular line) is attested from c.1880. The meaning "promiscuous woman" is from 1922.