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dichotomy (n.)

c. 1600, "a cutting in two, division into two classes;" 1630s, "state of having a dual arrangement or order," from Latinized form of Greek dikhotomia "a cutting in half," from dikho-, combining form of dikha "in two, asunder" (from or related to dis "twice," from PIE root *dwo- "two") + temnein "to cut" (from PIE root *tem- "to cut"). Related: Dichotomous; dichotomously.

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