Etymology
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valerian (n.)

plant of Eurasia, cultivated for its medicinal root, late 14c., from Old French valeriane "wild valerian" (13c.), apparently from feminine singular of Latin adjective Valerianus, from the personal name Valerius (see Valerie); but Weekley writes, "some of the German and Scand. forms of the name point rather to connection with the saga-hero Wieland."

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Greek (adj.)

late 14c., "of Greece or its people," from Greek (n.). Earlier Gregeis (c. 1200), from Old French Gregois; also Greekish (Old English Grecisc). From 1540s as "of the Greek language;" 1550s as "of the Eastern Church." From 1888 as "of Greek-letter fraternities." In venery, "anal," by 1970. Greek fire "inflammable substance invented 7c. by Callinicus of Heliopolis and used by the Byzantines (who in the Middle Ages were known as 'Greeks')" is from c. 1400, earlier Grickisce fure (c. 1200). Greek gift is from "Æneid," II.49: "timeo Danaos et dona ferentes."

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Pre-Greek (n.)

by 1996, a modern term for what linguists had called "Pelasgian," the substrate language spoken in Greece before the Greeks arrived and from which they apparently borrowed many words. "Pelasgian" was considered a dialect of Indo-European, but now "it is generally agreed that the substrate was non-Indo-European" [Beekes], at least by Beekes. Earlier as an adjective in reference to religion, culture, etc. of the region before the arrival of the historical Greeks.

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Hephaestus 

Greek god of fire and metal-working, from Latinized form of Greek Hēphaistos, a pre-Greek word of unknown origin.

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Hellene (n.)

"an ancient Greek," 1660s, from Greek Hellēn "a Greek," a word of unknown origin (see Hellenic).

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Aesculapius 

Greek god of medicine, a Latinized form of Greek Aisklepios. Related: Aesculapian.

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Hellenistic (adj.)

1706, "of or pertaining to Greece and its culture," from Hellene "an ancient Greek" + -istic. Since 1870s, specifically of Greek culture in the few centuries after Alexander. Related: Hellenistical (1650s). Hellenist "one who uses the Greek language, though not a Greek," is attested from 1610s.

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Aeolus 

Greek god of the winds, literally "the Rapid" or "the Changeable," from Greek aiolos (see Aeolian).

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Chiron 

wisest of the centaurs, from Latin Chiron, from Greek Kheiron, which is of unknown origin; Klein compares Greek kheirourgos "surgeon."

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gammadion (n.)

ornamental figure formed of four capital gammas, Medieval Greek gammadion, diminutive of Greek gamma (see gamma).

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