hurry"). In M.E., it took on the role of causal sprenge, from O.E. sprengan (as still in to spring a trap, etc.). Slang meaning "to pay" (for a treat, etc.) is arecorded from 1906. Meaning "to announce suddenly" (usually with on) is from 1876. Meaning "to release" (from imprisonment) is from 1900. The noun meaning "act of springing or leaping" is from mid-15c. The elastic coil that returns to its shape when stretched is so called from early 15c., originally in clocks and watches. As a device in carriages, coaches, etc., it is attested from 1660s. From c.1300 the noun had a general sense of "action or time of rising or springing into existence," and was used of sunrise, the waxing of the moon, rising tides, etc., a sense preserved in spring
(n.1). Springer as a type of spaniel is recorded from 1808.
"season following winter," 1540s, earlier springing time (late 14c.), spring-time (late 15c.), spring of the year (1520s), which had replaced O.E. Lent by late 14c. From spring
(v.); the notion is of the "spring of the year," when plants "spring up" (cf. spring of the leaf,
1530s). Other Gmc. languages tend to take words for "fore" or "early" as their roots for the season name, cf. Dan. voraar, Du. voorjaar, lit. "fore-year;" Ger. Frühling, from M.H.G. vrueje "early." In 15c., the season also was prime-temps, after O.Fr. prin tans, tamps prim (Fr. printemps, which replaced primevère 16c. as the common word for spring), from L. tempus primum, lit. "first time, first season." Spring fever was O.E. lenctenadle; first record of spring cleaning is in 1857 (in ancient Persia, the first month, corresponding to March-April, was Adukanaia, which apparently means "Irrigation-Canal-Cleaning Month;" Kent, p.167). Spring chicken "small roasting chicken" (usually 11 to 14 weeks) is recorded from 1780; transf. sense of "young person" first recorded 1906. Spring training first attested 1897.
"source of a stream or river," O.E., from spring
(v.) on the notion of the water "bursting forth" from the ground. Rarely used alone, appearing more often in compounds, e.g. wyllspring "wellspring." Fig. sense of "source or origin of something" is attested from early 13c.