Q From Connie Anderson: Gubernatorial: any info on this word?
A This is the adjective relating to a governor, particularly a governor in one of the states in the US. It looks odd because whoever coined it in the eighteenth century went back to the Latin original of the word governor, which is gubernator, and re-imported it. That word comes from the verb gubernare, to govern, but which originally meant to steer a ship, hence its figurative sense of “one who guides or leads”; it came to Latin from the Greek kubernan, “to steer”, and so is related to our modern word cybernetics and all the words beginning cyber-.
Page created 17 Oct. 1998
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