Words related to meteor

Origin and meaning of meta-

word-forming element of Greek origin meaning 1. "after, behind; among, between," 2. "changed, altered," 3. "higher, beyond;" from Greek meta (prep.) "in the midst of; in common with; by means of; between; in pursuit or quest of; after, next after, behind," in compounds most often meaning "change" of place, condition, etc. This is from PIE *me- "in the middle" (source also of German mit, Gothic miþ, Old English mið "with, together with, among").

The notion of "changing places with" probably led to the senses of "change of place, order, or nature," which was a principal meaning of the Greek word when used as a prefix (but it also denoted "community, participation; in common with; pursuing").

The third, modern, sense, "higher than, transcending, overarching, dealing with the most fundamental matters of," is due to misinterpretation of metaphysics (q.v.) as "science of that which transcends the physical." This has led to a prodigious erroneous extension in modern usage, with meta- affixed to the names of other sciences and disciplines, especially in the academic jargon of literary criticism: Metalanguage (1936) "a language which supplies terms for the analysis of an 'object' language;" metalinguistics (by 1949); metahistory (1957), metacommunication, etc.

*wer- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to raise, lift, hold suspended." 

It forms all or part of: aerate; aeration; aerial; aero-; aerobics; aerophyte; aerosol; air (n.1) "invisible gases that surround the earth;" airy; aorta; anaerobic; aria; arterial; arterio-; arteriosclerosis; arteriole; artery; aura; malaria; meteor

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek aerein "to lift, raise up;" Lithuanian svarus "heavy," sverti "to lift, weigh;" Old English swar, Old Norse svarr, Old High German swar, German schwer "heavy."

meteoroid (n.)

"rock or metallic mass floating in space," which becomes a meteor when it enters Earth's atmosphere and a meteorite when it strikes, 1865, formed in English from meteor + -oid.

meteorite (n.)

"rock or metallic mass of extraterrestrial origin that falls to earth after streaking across the sky as a meteor," 1818, from meteor + -ite. They were known from ancient times, but the idea that some such iron masses or rocks had fallen to earth from the sky attained credence among scientists c. 1800.

aorta (n.)

in anatomy, "main trunk of the arterial system," 1590s, from Medieval Latin aorta, from Greek aorte "a strap to hang (something by)," a word applied by Aristotle to the great artery of the heart, literally "what is hung up," probably from aeirein "to lift, heave, raise," which is of uncertain origin, possibly from PIE root *wer- (1) "raise, lift, hold suspended." Used earlier by Hippocrates of the bronchial tubes. It is cognate with the second element in meteor. Related: Aortal; aortic.

meteoric (adj.)

1804, "pertaining to or of the nature of meteors;" earlier "dependent on atmospheric conditions" (1789), from meteor + -ic. Figurative sense of "transiently brilliant" is by 1836.

meteorology (n.)

"science of the earth's atmosphere, scientific study of weather and climate," especially with a view to forecasting the weather, 1610s, from French météorologie and directly from Greek meteōrologia "treatise on celestial phenomena," literally "discussion of high things," from meteōron "thing high up" (see meteor) + -logia "treatment of" (see -logy).