The first usage dates back to a time before 900AD It comes from the Old English word pæll that means pope’s pallium that again is derived from the Latin pallium that means cloak.
The second meaning has a later origin, about 1350-1400. It comes from the Middle English pallen that is an aphetic variant of appall.
1. A cloth, often of velvet for spreading over a coffin, bier or tomb.
2. A coffin
3. Anything that cover, shrouds or overspreads especially with darkness or gloom.
4. To have a wearying or tiresome effect (usually followed by on or upon)
5. To become distasteful or unpleasant
If you follow the world of professional wrestling, the kind they show on sports channels I’m sure the first image that comes up is that of Pall Bearer (or Paul Bearer). The person was as scary as the legendary Undertaker himself, always accompanying him with a coffin. Well that’s what a pall bearer does. So as far as this imagery goes one can associate pall with death and coffin and hence lead to a cloth that covers a coffin. The grim imagery is a natural association.
1. The recent violence in the country cast a pall over the imminent visit of the neighbouring country’s cricket team. (Noun)
2. The history lessons usually palled on me but a change of teacher last week changed all that.(noun-2)