Sunday, April 12, 2009

Weird Medical Etymology of the Day

Fornication comes from the word fornix, which means "arch." In Roman times, customers used to identify the brothels by a prominent archway at the entrance. (Coincidentally, we refer to the anterior, posterior, and lateral fornices as components of the uterus, but we also have a fornix in the brain, so interpret that as you will).

HT: My Gross Anatomy Prof

Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for the possibility that this is all urban legend.

4 comments:

Jacob Wintersmith said...

Is that hat tip to your anatomy professor who is gross, or to the Professor of Gross Anatomy?

John H said...

At least medics in the US still speak proper English.

Here in the UK medics have set about altering the language.

Examples are:

The use of the pronunciation UM-BEE-LIE-E-CAL for the word UM-BILL-E-CAL.

Using SER-VIE-E-CAL for SER-VICK-AL (from the Latin word cervix - pronounced as it looks).

The use of KEEMO-THERAPY instead of KEM-O-THERAPY. Probably because it uses those new scientific keemicals from a keemist as opposed to the old fashioned chemicals from a chemist.

There are more but my blood is boi-e-ling.

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