Etymology
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monoceros (n.)

c. 1300, "the unicorn," from Old French monoceros "unicorn," from Latin monoceros, from Greek monokerōs, from monos "single" (from PIE root *men- (4) "small, isolated") + keras "horn of an animal," from PIE root *ker- (1) "horn; head." The constellation below the Twins and the Crab is recorded by this name in English by 1797. Probably it owes its origin to Flemish cartographer Petrus Plancius in the 1590s.

This is a modern constellation, generally supposed to have been first charted by Bartschius as Unicornu; but Olbers and Ideler say that it was of much earlier formation, the latter quoting allusions to it, in the work of 1564, as "the other Horse south of the Twins and the Crab"; and Scaliger found it on a Persian sphere. [Richard Hinckley Allen, "Star Names and Their Meanings," London: 1899]
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*men- (4)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "small, isolated."

It forms all or part of: malmsey; manometer; monad; monarchy; monastery; monism; monist; monk; mono; mono-; monoceros; monochrome; monocle; monocular; monogamy; monogram; monolith; monologue; monomania; Monophysite; monopoly; monosyllable; monotony.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek monos "single, alone," manos "rare, sparse;" Armenian manr "thin, slender, small."

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*ker- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "horn; head," with derivatives referring to horned animals, horn-shaped objects, and projecting parts.

It forms all or part of: alpenhorn; Capricorn; carat; carotid; carrot; carotene; cerato-; cerebellum; cerebral; cerebrum; cervical; cervix; charivari; cheer; chelicerae; corn (n.2) "hardening of the skin;" cornea; corner; cornet; cornucopia; cranium; flugelhorn; hart; hartebeest; horn; hornbeam; hornblende; hornet; keratin; kerato-; migraine; monoceros; reindeer; rhinoceros; saveloy; serval; triceratops; unicorn.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit srngam "horn;" Persian sar "head," Avestan sarah- "head;" Greek karnon "horn," koryne "club, mace," koryphe "head;" Latin cornu "horn," cervus "deer;" Old English horn "horn of an animal;" Welsh carw "deer."

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unicorn (n.)

early 13c., from Old French unicorne, from Late Latin unicornus (Vulgate), from noun use of Latin unicornis (adj.) "having one horn," from uni- "one" (from PIE root *oi-no- "one, unique") + cornus "horn" (from PIE root *ker- (1) "horn; head").

The Late Latin word translates Greek monoceros, itself rendering Hebrew re'em (Deuteronomy xxxiii.17 and elsewhere), which probably was a kind of wild ox. According to Pliny, a creature with a horse's body, deer's head, elephant's feet, lion's tail, and one black horn two cubits long projecting from its forehead. Compare German Einhorn, Welsh ungorn, Breton uncorn, Old Church Slavonic ino-rogu. Old English used anhorn as a loan-translation of Latin unicornis.

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