I view that sock as an article of garments is obtained from Latin soccus for slipper. But, exactly how did it also become a synonym for "a punch" or "to punch"?


In Brazilian portuguese we say "soco" for a punch, and also some say this comes from tupi-guarani, a mix of 2 Brazilian native languperiods that were compiled by the first Portuguese missionaries.
It can be of Wolof origin. Here is an excerpt from The African Substratum in Amerihave the right to lutz-heilmann.info (by Margaret Wade-Lewis - 1988):


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The colloquial verb to sock indicates "to hit or strike forcetotally," "to punch," "to deliver a blow" (Amerihave the right to Heritage. 1976: 1226). Its probable origin is the Wolof verb /s 1 k/ , definition "to beat through a pestle," "to strike" specifically with somepoint.

Note: Wolof (/ˈwɒlɒf/) is a language of Senegal, the Gambia, and also Mauritania, and also the aboriginal language of the Wolof civilization.

Moreover, the equivalent sounding verbs in lutz-heilmann.info and Wolof are oboffered by the British linguist David Dalby in 1969 (from The Slavery Reader, Volume 1By Gad J. Heuman, James Walvin):

The verb "sock," in the sense of "to strike," particularly with somepoint, has freshly been popularized in the black Amerihave the right to phrase "sock it to me" (with an obscene connotation), and is reminiscent of a similar-sounding verb in Wolof meaning "to beat through a pestle.

The Thesaurus of Word Origins (by Joseph Twadell Shipley - 1945) has a various approach:

Sock, in the slang feeling, to beat, is just one of a series. When you urge a dog to sick "im, the verb imitates the sound you make; a form of Seek him! (common Teut., AS. secan). One action stronger is to sock "im ; the following stage, to soak "im one!

Then, the same book includes the etymology of sick, soak, steep, sugar and also stoop; and also tries to make a connection:

If you are sick, the word is prevalent Teut., AS. seoc.(Sickle is a diminutive, from L. secnla, from sccarc, to cut.) To soak, to steep, is fcom OE. socian, to suck in, a weak create of OE. suhave the right to, wfor this reason Eng. suckj L. sh- gcrc, suet — , to suck; wtherefore Eng. suction. A little one that sucks is a suckling; from this by backformation comes the verb, suckle. Sugar might have been affected by L. sugere; it is win OFr. Sucre, from zuchrc, from LL. cuccarum, from Arab, sukkar. The verb to steep is from OE. steap, from OTeut. staupom, a vessel for water. The adjective steep is likewise from OE. steap, from OTeut. staup, stup; from this comes the OE. weak verb stupian, to lower, to bow, wtherefore Eng. stoop. One will certainly stoop to put on (or dodge) a sock.

Note: Tright here can be typos in the excerpt. I duplicated and also pasted the original message.

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OED, World wide words, The Routledge Dictionary of Historical Slang, Oxford Thesaurus of Modern Slang and also some various other comparable sources; all say unknown beginning. However before, OED has the earliest citation from 1699:

Sock, to Beat... I"ll Sock ye, I"ll Drub ye tightly.

B. E. · A brand-new dictionary of the terms prehistoric and modern of the canting crew · 1st edition, 1699 (1 vol.)