batten (n.) Look up batten at
"strip of wood (especially used to fasten canvas over ships' hatches)," 1650s, Englished variant of baton "a stick, a staff" (see baton). Nautical use attested from 1769.
batten (v.1) Look up batten at
"to improve; to fatten," 1590s, probably representing an English dialectal survival of Old Norse batna "improve" (source also of Old English batian, Old Frisian batia, Old High German bazen, Gothic gabatnan "to become better, avail, benefit," Old English bet "better;" also see boot (v.)). Related: Battened; battening.
batten (v.2) Look up batten at
"to furnish with battens," 1775, from batten (n.); phrase batten down recorded from 1823. Related: Battened; battening.