Etymology
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vanadium (n.)
rare metallic element, 1833, named 1830 by Swedish chemist Nils Gabriel Sefström (1787-1845), from Old Norse Vanadis, one of the names of the Norse beauty goddess Freyja (perhaps from PIE root *wen- (1) "to desire, strive for," which would connect it to Venus); the metal perhaps so called for of its colorful compounds (an earlier name for it was erythronium, for the redness of its salts when heated). With metallic element ending -ium. Related: Vanadous; vanadious.
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*wen- (1)
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to desire, strive for."

It forms all or part of: vanadium; Vanir; venerate; veneration; venerable; venereal; venery (n.1) "pursuit of sexual pleasure;" venery (n.2) "hunting, the sports of the chase;" venial; venison; venom; Venus; wean; ween; Wend "Slavic people of eastern Germany;" win; winsome; wish; wont; wynn.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit veti "follows after," vanas- "desire," vanati "desires, loves, wins;" Avestan vanaiti "he wishes, is victorious;" Latin venerari "to worship," venus "love, sexual desire; loveliness, beauty;" Old English wynn "joy," wunian "to dwell," wenian "to accustom, train, wean," wyscan "to wish."
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