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[ Wiktionary : ]

Etymology

From praeter- +‎ mitto

The polyfunctionality of praeter- and polysemy of mitto complicates the determination of the most probable semantic shift (though I can conjecture a few, but have not to keep this post short).

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Mitto means "to let [something] go". Praeter means "along [a path], [moving] past/by [a location]". Together, they mean "to let something go along its way, to let something pass by". Metaphorically, if you let something pass by, you get the same meaning as in English: you let it happen, you ignore it, you don't act on it. So the etymology seems to make sense? Or is there something unexpected in it?

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  • +1. Thanks. About your two last questions: Now they do; I could not determine which meanings were apt for 'mitto' and 'praeter'.
    – user37
    Jun 25, 2016 at 3:43
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    @LePressentiment: Cool, great!
    – Cerberus
    Jun 25, 2016 at 23:18

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