Discuss word origins and meanings.
Marsha, Random House defined a 'throw pillow' (1955-60) as “a small pillow placed on a chair, couch, etc., primarily for decoration.” The Oxford English Dictionary also provided the synonyms ‘throw cushion’ and ‘scatter cushion’ (North American). And the idea I am getting is that the sense of ‘throw’ here is that the pillows/cushions are ‘thrown’ or ‘scattered’ about decoratively, as opposed to the bulkier pillows and cushions that you sit on, on a couch for example, that are more substantial and less portable, and which are not merely there for looks. Similarly we also have ‘throw rugs’ (1925-30) or ‘scatter rugs’ (1930-35), which again are small, easily movable, and largely decorative (usually placed in front of a chair or table). And then, to add to the ‘scatter’ list, there are also ‘scatter pins,’ those small, ornamental pins which might be worn by women on a blouse or suit jacket.ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
On BBCAmerica (a cable network here) There's a great episode of "Couplings" a Brit Comedy where Steve is obliged to shop for furniture for his new home with Susan and he does a great soliloqy on the "uselessness" of throw cushions. When a guest sits down, he normally picks up the throw cushion and moves it away. There's no doubt that throw cushions are solely used as decorations and have no practical purpose whatsoever.ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS