Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Cross Words: Erose


[i-rohs] adjective 1. uneven, as if gnawed away; 2. botany. having the margin irregularly incised, as if gnawed, as a leaf.

Etymology: L erosus, pp. of erodere. The dictionary tells me to see erode, which also comes from the Latin erodere. The prefix e- means "out" or "off" and rodere means "to gnaw." I'm surprised that the etymology for erode ends with "see RAT," but then I realize that "rodent" must be related as well! Sure enough, "rodent" comes from the Latin rodens, the prp. of rodere.

(Photo "Jagged, Yet Smooth" CC Flickr user Starfires. Thanks!)

No comments:

Post a Comment