E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Slave (1 syl.).
This is an example of the strange changes which come over some words. The Slavi were a tribe which once dwelt on the banks of the Dnieper, and were so called from slav (noble, illustrious); but as, in the lower ages of the Roman empire, vast multitudes of them were spread over Europe in the condition of captive servants, the word came to signify a slave.
Similarly, Goths means the good or godlike men; but since the invasion of the Goths the word has become synonymous with barbarous, bad, ungodlike.
Distraction is simply dis-traho, as diversion is di-verto. The French still employ the word for recreation or amusement, but when we talk of being distracted we mean anything but being amused or entertained.