I looked up the word "start" recently on Merriam-Webster's online dictionary, and I seem to remember that the order of definitions is historical: the first historical definition comes first, followed by the next, et cetera. That is precisely why I was surprised to see the first definition given before the rest. I would have assumed that the verb "start" originally meant "to begin". But these definitions seem to imply that the other sense of the word, to "suddenly" and "briefly" make an "involuntary movement", comes first.
Thus, to make myself clearer, I would have assumed that the verb "to start" originally meant "to begin", but the order of definitions given seems to say that the verb "to start" originally meant "to move suddenly and violently : spring".
Are my observation and conclusion correct? Does the order of definitions indeed follow historical order, and does this indeed imply that the verb "to start" originally took the more uncommon definition of "to move suddenly and violently"?