28 January 2010

word: ventriloquism

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(p. 855)

ventriloquism n. 1797, formed as a descriptive noun to ventriloquist, with substitution of the suffix -ism. The word has replaced older ventriloquy. —ventriloquist n. 1656, formed from English ventriloquy + -ist. —ventriloquy n. 1584, formed from Late Latin ventriloquus ventriloquist + English -y. Late Latin ventriloquus (Latin venter, genitive ventris, belly + loqui speak) was patterned on Green engastr√≠mythos, literally, speaking in the belly.

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