- screen (n.)
- mid-14c., "upright piece of furniture providing protection from heat of a fire, drafts, etc.," probably from a shortened (Anglo-French?) variant of Old North French escren, Old French escran "a screen against heat" (early 14c.), perhaps from Middle Dutch scherm "screen, cover," or Frankish *skrank "barrier," from a Germanic root related to Old High German skirm, skerm "protection" (cf. skirmish).
Meaning "net-wire frame used in windows and doors" is recorded from 1895. Meaning "flat horizontal surface for reception of projected images" is from 1810, originally in reference to magic lantern shows; later of movies. Transferred sense of "cinema world collectively" is attested from 1914; hence screen test (1918), etc. Screen saver first attested 1990.
- screen (v.)
- "to shield from punishment, to conceal," late 15c., from screen (n.). Meaning "examine systematically for suitability" is from 1943; sense of "to release a movie" is from 1915. Related: Screened; screening.