aurora (n): c.1386, from L. Aurora, the Roman goddess of dawn, from PIE *ausus- "dawn," also the name of the Indo-European goddess of the dawn, from base *aus- "to shine," especially of the dawn (cf. Gk. eos "dawn," Skt. usah, Lith. ausra "dawn," L. auster "south wind," O.E. east "east"). Aurora Borealis first attested 1621, introduced by Gassendi.