appendicitis[ə pen′də sīt′is]
Origin: < appendix + -itis
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Origin: New Latin, from Latin appendix, appendic-, appendage; see appendix.Word History: Even though the word appendicitis was in use in 1885, the year in which the Oxford English Dictionary published the section “Anta-Battening” that would have contained the word, the editor, James Murray, omitted this “crack-jaw medical and surgical word” on the advice of Oxford's Regius Professor of Medicine, Sir Henry Wentworth Acland. As K.M. Elisabeth Murray, the granddaughter and biographer of James Murray, points out, “The problem of what scientific words to include was a continuing one, and James Murray was always under pressure—from his advisers . . . who thought the emphasis should be on words from good literature and from those in the [Oxford University] Press who wanted to save cost and time—not to include scientific words of recent origin.” In 1902 no less a person than Edward VII had his appendix removed, and his coronation was postponed because of the operation. Appendicitis hence came into widespread use and has remained so, thereby pointing up the lexicographer's difficult task of selecting the new words that people will look for in their dictionaries.
appendicitis - Cultural DefinitionThe New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
appendicitis - Medical Definition
appendicitis - Science Definition
Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.