1570s, in military sense, from Middle French escorte (16c.), from Italian scorta, literally "a guiding," from scorgere "to guide," from Vulgar Latin *excorrigere, from ex- "out" (see ex-) + corrigere "set right" (see correct). The sense of "person accompanying another to a social occasion" is 1936.
1708, from escort (n.); social sense is from 1890. Related: Escorted; escorting.