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!

Etymology Word of the Week – As some of you know, in addition to working in the Admissions Office, I also teach Latin at Saint Ignatius and am something of a "word nerd."  Thus, each week, I’ll sneak a vocabulary word (sometimes derived from Latin, sometimes not) into the e-blast.  Here, then. is this week’s edition of the Etymology Word of the Week.  


Definition: “Capable of being placed opposite to something else, such as the thumb of a primate with respect to the other fingers of the same hand - thus allowing the digits to grasp and handle objects.”  

Origin/Derivation: From the Latin preposition ob meaning “in the direction of, in front of” and the Latin verb pono, ponere, posui, positum meaning “to put or place.”      

Related Words/Phrases:  oppose/opponent, suppose, compose/component/composition, expose/exponent/exposition, repose, position, postpone, transpose