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Etymons gone wild.

"INDYCAR", trade name of the Indy Racing League LLC, has a distinction which few have paused to appreciate. It is a race sanctioning body which is named after an annual auto race (Indianapolis 500), which is named after a city (Indianapolis), which is named after a state (Indiana), which is named after a population (North American Indians), which is named after a large geographical region (East Indies), which is named after a river (Indus River). To the best of my knowledge, nothing else meets or exceeds the six levels of etymons (words from which other words are derived) which INDYCAR derives from. And it could be argued that "India" should fit in at the etymon for "East Indies", adding a seventh level.

It is relatively hard to find even three levels of derivation stacked upon each other before the origins are lost in the mists of time. Some of these chains of etymology are given below, but, as puzzles for the reader, with the specific terms replaced by generalities (but placed back in Answers and Solutions). Checking relied primarily on Wikipedia and the Online Etymology Dictionary (etymonline.com). See how many of the following you can identify.
 1. A record company which is named after a capital which is named
after a national toponym which is named after an explorer which is
named, ultimately, after a bird.
 2. A ground cover which is named after a building which is named after
a sports team which is named after something distant.
3. A shoe which is named after a university which is named after a city
which is named after a pathway.
4. A military alliance which is named after a sea which is named after a
mountain which is named after a god.
5. An insect which is named after a type of killer which is named after
a religious sect which is named after a drug.
6. A messaging system which is named after a technology which is named
after a fundamental particle which is named after an energy description
which is named after a semiprecious gem.
7. A crop pest which is named after a state which is named after a river
which is named after a color.
8. A Fortune-500 company which is named after a machine which is named
after an insect which is named after a mammal.
9. A hair removal treatment which is named after an attire which is
named after a Pacific site which is named after a tree.
10. An LGBQ intuition which is named after a locating system which is
named after a form of radiation which is named after a shape and
direction.
11. A bacterium genus which is named after a disease which is named
after a social organization which is named after a military unit.
12. A governing document which is named after a ship which is named
after a type of plant which is named after a month which is named after
a goddess.
13. An advertizing medium which is named after a food which is named
after a certain nobleman's title which is named after a town.
14. A communication directive which is named after a clerical supply
which is named after an element which is named after something hot.
15. A test spacecraft which is named after a fictional spacecraft which
is named after a number of naval ships which are named after an ideal.
16. A genre which is named after a group of languages which is named
after an empire which is named after a city which is named after a
mythical character.
17. A color which is named after a drink which is named after a French
region which is named after an Italian region.
18. A color which is named after a drink which is named after a French
region which is named after a Germanic tribe.
19. An editorial guide which is named after a university which is named
after a city which is named after a smell.
20. A melon which is named after a color which is named after a bird
which is named after an island group which is named after a mammal.
21. An interpreted programming language which is named after a
general-purpose programming language which is named after a drink which
is named after an island.
22. An insect virus which is named after a genetic material which is
named after a pentose monosaccharide which is named after another
pentose monosaccharide which is named after a product from tree sap
which is named after an ethnicity.
23. A national park which is named after a tree which is named after a
biblical character which is named after a religious declaration.
24. A neuroscience journal which is named after a brain region which is
named after a fish which is named after a mythical creature.
25. A comic strip which is named after an audience which is named after
an edible seed which is named after another edible seed.
26. A put-down which is named after a hominid which is named after a
valley which is named after a pastor.
27. A stereotyped woman which is named after a figure which is named
after a material which is named after a country which perhaps is named
after a dynasty. 


MARK ISAAK

Sunnyvale, California

ANSWERS AND SOLUTIONS

1. Columbia Records < District of Columbia < Columbia < Christopher Columbus < dove (Latin columba.)

2. Astroturf < Houston Astrodome < Houston Astros < star (Greek astro.)

3. Oxford shoes < University of Oxford < Oxford, UK < Oxenaforda, or "ford of the Oxen".

4. NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) < Atlantic Ocean < Mount Atlas (in Mauritania) < Atlas.

5. assassin bug < assassin < hashishiyyin < hashish.

6. email (electronic mail) < electronics < electron < electric < amber (Latin electrum.)

7. Colorado potato beetle < Colorado < Colorado River < red (Spanish colorado.)

8. Caterpillar, Inc. < Caterpillar tractor < caterpillar < shaggy cat (Old North French chatepelose.)

9. bikini waxing < bikini < Bikini Atoll < "Coconut place" (Marshallese Pikinni.)

10. gaydar ("gay radar") < radar ("radio detecting and ranging") < radio < beam (Latin radius.)

11. Legionella < Legionnaires' Disease < American Legion < legion.

12. Mayflower Compact < Mayflower < mayflowers < May < Greek goddess Maia.

13. sandwich board < sandwich < John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich < Sandwich, Kent, England.

14. Cc (carbon copy) < carbon paper < carbon < coal, ember (Latin carbonem.)

15. Space Shuttle Enterprise < Starship Enterprise (of Star Trek fame) < HMS Enterprise and USS Enterprise--many ships so named since 1774 < enterprise.

16. romances < Romance languages < Roman Empire < Rome < Romulus.

17. champagne < champagne < Champagne wine region < Campania.

18. burgundy < burgundy < Burgundy < Burgundians (English "highlanders").

19. Chicago Manual of Style < University of Chicago (and U. of C. Press) < Chicago < either "place of wild onion" (Fox sheka:ko:heki) or "at the skunk place" (Ojibwa shika:konk.)

20. canary melon < canary yellow < canary < Canary Islands < dog (Latin canis.)

21. JavaScript < Java < Java coffee < Java, Indonesia.

22. polydnavirus < DNA (deoxyribose nucleic acid) < ribose < arabinose < gum arabic < Arab.

23. Joshua Tree National Park < Joshua tree (Yucca brevifolia) < Joshua < "Yahweh is salvation" (Hebrew Yehoshua.)

24. Hippocampus < hippocampus < seahorse (genus Hippocampus) < horse monster (Greek hippos kampos.)

25. Peanuts < peanut gallery (specifically, of the "Howdy Doody" show) < peanut < pea.

26. neanderthal < Neanderthals (now Homo neanderthalensis) < Neandertal, Germany < Joachim Neander.

27. china doll < china doll < china < China <? Qin.
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Author:Isaak, Mark
Publication:Word Ways
Date:Aug 1, 2016
Words:1453
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