In 458 CE, Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus, a former Roman patrician and generally cool dude, was summoned from his farm to lead the army in response to an attack by the neighboring Aequi tribe. To facilitate the war effort as best as possible, he was appointed dictator and given absolute authority over all matters. After the Roman victory, many people looked to him to continue leading, but he stepped down from his total control to go back to farming. This immortalized him in Roman legend as one of the most virtuous people ever; indeed, many historians today list Cincinnatus among the greatest leaders of all time. Citizens of the newly formed country of America also agreed with this profusely, touting him as an example of civic virtue and republicanism. This idolization culminated with a group of settlers in 1788 who named a city after him in what is now southwest Ohio. That's right; Cincinnati is named after a Roman general! The more you know.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a senior studying government and linguistics at Harvard University, where I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy trivia, politics, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.