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Iris pseudacorus - an odd etymological twist

  • To: iris-l@Rt66.com
  • Subject: Iris pseudacorus - an odd etymological twist
  • From: tlittle@Lanl.GOV (Tom Tadfor Little)
  • Date: Tue, 14 May 1996 16:21:29 -0600

Back when we were discussing the pronunciation of Iris
pseudacorus, I mentioned the fact that the name comes
from pseud(o) + Acorus, i.e., false Acorus. Browsing an
unabridged dictionary today (Webster's Third), I discovered
that the Greek word akoros (which is where the Latin
Acorus comes from) apparently referred not to the plant
we call Acorus, but rather to Iris pseudacorus!

So it seems that the rumor of this iris's "falsehood" is
greatly exaggerated.  ;)

Happy irising, Tom.


Tom Tadfor Little         tlittle@lanl.gov  -or-  telp@Rt66.com
technical writer/editor   Los Alamos National Laboratory
Telperion Productions     http://www.rt66.com/~telp/

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