From Middle English scren, screne, from Anglo-Norman escren ("firescreen, the tester of a bed"), Old French escren, escrein, escran (modern French écran ("screen")), from Middle Dutch scherm, from Old Dutch *skirm, from Proto-West Germanic *skirmi, from Proto-Germanic *skirmiz ("fur, shelter, covering, screen"), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)ker- ("to cut, divide"). Cognate with Dutch scherm ("screen"), German Schirm ("screen"). scherm.
An alternative etymology derives Old French escren from Old Dutch *skrank ("barrier") (compare German Schrank ("cupboard"), Schranke.
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