In linguistics, philology is the cross-referencing of texts, usually to reconstruct words or understand something about olden times. The etymology of philology was therefore discovered through philology, so let's dive in. This is not your usual -ology word; it's a portmanteau of philos, meaning "loving", and logos, meaning "words". A philologist loves words. Like a lexophile or logophile, but cooler, since it's an actual occupation. Philos has an obscure origin, but possibly comes from a Proto-Indo-European root sounding like bhil and meaning "good". Meanwhile, logos (the same as the rhetorical appeal) is from lego, meaning "say", from the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European root leg, meaning "to collect" (as in to get your speech together, apparently). Guess how that root was reconstructed? Philology!
Adam Aleksic is a 221-month-old, 2800-ounce high school senior with disturbing interests in etymology, vexillology, geography, board games, limericks, and law. Adam will be studying linguistics at Harvard University in the fall.
The Etymology Nerd