"pertaining to Ionia or the Ionians," 1570s of music; 1580s of architecture, from Latin Ionicus, from Greek Ionikos (see Ionian). In prosody, a foot of two long syllables followed by two short. The Ionic school of philosophers (Thales, Anaxamander, etc.) studied the material world in ways that somewhat anticipated observational science. It also once was the name of an important school of Greek painting, but all of it save the name is lost. Related: Ionicize (1841).
"pertaining to ions," 1890, from ion + -ic.
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