Saint Ignatius High School

Etymology Word of the Week

Director of Admissions Pat O'Rourke '90, a self-proclaimed "word nerd," brings you his Etymology Word of the Week. Every other week he presents an online Etymology lesson just for fun!
Triduum - "a series of special religious observances over a three-day period, in preparation for a great feast.”  From the Latin numeral tres, tria meaning “three,” and the Latin noun dies, diei meaning “day.”  (All information is from, and/or

RELATED WORDS/PHRASES – Tridentine (related to the Council of Trent; Tridentum is Latin for “Trent”)

“Maundy Thursday” is another name for Holy Thursday, the day that initiates the Triduum; Maundy refers to the act of foot-washing and the word itself is derived from the Latin verb mando, mandare, mandavi, mandatum meaning “command, order.”

A similar-looking verb, but definitely not the same one, mando, mandere, mandi, mansum meaning “to chew” is related to words like “mandible (jawbone).” 

And so no, “Maundy Thursday” is not how Apollonia names the days of the week in English in The Godfather :)

GUESS THE APHORISM:  Curiosity... (scroll for answer)

Answer: ...killed the cat.