English Words of (Unexpected) Greek Origin.

Learn easily Greek using the roots of the English words.

Archive for June, 2012

Etymology of solid, soldier

Posted by Johannes on 24 June 2012

The word solid comes from the French solide (firm, dense, compact) from the Latin solidus/solus (firm, whole, entire), which is a transliteration of the Greek holos [whole; Gr: όλος].
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From the same root: solidus, soldier, solicit, solidarity, solidity, solicitor, holo- [holocaust, hologram, holograph etc], holism, holistic.
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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) olos: whole, entire [Gr: όλος]
b) holisticos: holistic [Gr: ολιστικός]
c) oli: all, everybody [Gr: όλοι]
d) solido: solidus (coin) [Gr: σόλιδο]
 
 More. Post 223.

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Etymology of exotic

Posted by Johannes on 24 June 2012

The word exotic (belonging to another country), comes from the French exotique from the Latin exoticus, which is a transliteration of the Greek exotikos [foreign, from the outside; Gr: εξωτικός], from exo [outside; Gr: έξω].
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From the same root: exoticism, exo- [exit, exodus, exogamous, exogenous, exophthalmic, exorcism, exoteric, exothermic, exterior etc].
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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) exo: outside [Gr: έξω]
b) exodos: exit, exodus [Gr: έξοδος]
c) exoterico: exterior, abroad, outward appearance [Gr: εξωτερικό]
d) exoticos: exotic [Gr: εξωτικός]
e) exo- [exosi: eviction, ejection; exostis: balcony; exostrefia: extroversion; exosyzygicos: extramaterital; exoscholicos: adj out-of-school; exoterikefsi: exteriorization; exotico: fairy, elf; exofyllo: (book) cover; etc.]More. Post 222.

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Etymology of elixir

Posted by Johannes on 24 June 2012

The word elixir or philosopher’s stone, believed by alchemists to transmute baser metals into gold and/or to cure diseases and prolong life, comes from the Arabic al-iksir, from the late Greek xirion [powder for drying wounds; Gr: ξηρίον], from the Greek xiros [dry; Gr: ξηρός].
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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) xiros: dry [Gr: ξηρός]
b) xirasia: drought [Gr: ξηρασία]
c) xira: land, mainland [Gr: ξηρά]
d) xirotita: dryness, aridity [Gr: ξηρότητα]
e) elixirio: elixir [Gr: ελιξήριο; loanword]

More. Post 221.

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Etymology of sophistication, sophisticated

Posted by Johannes on 24 June 2012

The word sophistication (use or employment of sophistry) comes from the Latin sophisticare (adulterate, cheat quibble) from the Latin sophisticus (of sophists), a transliteration of the Greek sophistikos (of or pertaining to a sophist), from the Greek sophistis (a wise man, master, teacher).

From the same root: sophist, sophisticate, sophisticated, sophism, sophistic, sophistry, sophomore

In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):

a) sophistis: sophist [Gr: σοφιστής]
b) sophisma: sophism, fallacy [Gr: σόφισμα]
c) sophistia: sophistry [Gr: σοφιστεία ]

 More. Post 220

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Etymology of canvas

Posted by Johannes on 2 June 2012

The word canvas (an extremely heavy-duty plain-woven fabric) comes from the old French canevas, from cannapaceus (made of hemp), from the Latin cannabis, a transliteration of the the Greek cannabis (hemp).

 
 
In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) camvas: canvas [Gr: καμβάς]
b) cannavis: hemp, cannabis [Gr: κάνναβις]
_____________________________ More. Post 219. ________________
 

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Etymology of canteen

Posted by Johannes on 2 June 2012

The word canteen (store in a military camp) comes from the French cantine from the Italian cantina (wine cellar, vault) from the Latin canto (corner), which derives from the Greek word canthos(canthus, corner of the eye; Gr: κανθός).

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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) canthos: canthus [Gr: κανθός]
b) cantina: canteen [Gr: καντίνα; loanword ]
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See also (in Greek) “Etymological Dictionary of Modern Greek” by G. Babiniotis p.628 and EP21.
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Etymology of camera

Posted by Johannes on 2 June 2012

The word camera (a device that records and stores images; vaulted building), comes from the Latin camera (vaulted room), which is a transliteration of the Greek word camara (a vault, arched roof or ceiling, vaulted chamber; room). The word was also used as a short for camera obscura (dark chamber; a black box with a lens that could project images of external objects), and thus it became the word for “picture-taking device”.

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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) camera: camera [Gr: κάμερα; loanword]
b) camara: arch, arcade [Gr: καμάρα]
c) camara: room [Gr: κάμαρα]

d) camariera: chambermaid [Gr: καμαριέρα]
e) camarini: dressing room, green room [Gr: καμαρίνι]

 

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Etymology of serpent

Posted by Johannes on 2 June 2012

The word serpent (reptile, snake) comes from the Old French  sarpent, from the Latin serpentem [nom. serpens; snake], which derives from the Greek verb herpo / erpo (to creep; Gr: έρπω].
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From the same root: serpentine
 
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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) erpeto: serpent [Gr: ερπετό]
b) serpantina: serpentine [Gr: σερπαντίνα; loanword]
c) erpo: v. to creep [Gr: έρπω].

_________________________ Post 217. ____________________

 
 
 

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Etymology of dragon, dragoon

Posted by Johannes on 2 June 2012

The word dragon comes from the Old French dragon, which in turn comes from the Latin draconem  [huge serpent, dragon], from the Greek word drakon [serpent, giant seafish; Gr: δράκων].
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From the same root: dragoon, dragonet
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In modern Greek (Romeika, Rumca):
a) drakos: dragon [Gr: δράκος]

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