In oracle bone script, 传 = (人 a man) + (专, a hand holding a weaving spindle), suggesting the action of turning over or exchange.
In some bronze script versions of, 辵 (as we know 辵 represents walking) is added to emphasize the post-chaise travels all over many places.
The original meaning of 传 is post-chaise or stagecoach. Its meaning is extended to:
1. verb.（交给）pass, e.g. 传给后代 hand down for posterity; 把球传给边锋 pass the ball to the wing; 优良传统代代相传 pass down fine traditions from generation to generation
2.（传授）pass on, e.g. 把手艺传给徒弟 pass on one’s skills to an apprentice
3. verb.（散布）spread; e.g. 传口信 pass on a message; 传谣 spread rumours;坏事传千里 Bad news travels fast; 这件事不能传出去 This affair must be hushed up.
4. verb（传唤）summon, e.g. 传被告/证人 summon a defendant/witness; 传某人到庭作证 call sb. to testify
5. verb, (表达) convey
6. verb（传导）transmit, e.g. 传热 conduct heat 一股暖流传遍他全身。A feeling of warmth ran through his body.
1. commentaries on the classics, e.g. 经传 Confucian classics and commentaries; 《左传》The Zuo Commentary (on The Spring and Autumn Annals)
2. biography, e.g. 《林肯传》The Life of Lincoln; 名人传 biographies of famous people
3. story (usually used in titles), e.g.《白蛇传》The Story of the White Snake; 《水浒传》The Water Margin/Outlaws of the Marsh