Etymology
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Words related to peri-

period (n.)

early 15c., periode, "a course or extent of time; a cycle of recurrence of a disease," from Old French periode (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin periodus "recurring portion, cycle," from Latin periodus "a complete sentence," also "cycle of the Greek games," from Greek periodos "cycle, circuit, period of time," literally "a going around," from peri "around" (see peri-) + hodos "a going, traveling, journey; a way, path, road," a word of uncertain origin (see Exodus).

Sense of "repeated cycle of events" led to that of "interval of time." From 1712 as "an indefinite part of any continued state or series of events;" by 1727 as "time in which a circuit or revolution (as of a heavenly body) is made." Sense of "episode of menstruation" is by 1829, probably short for period of menstruation (1808), etc..  

The meaning "dot marking end of a sentence" is recorded c. 1600, from the earlier sense of "a complete sentence, from one full stop to another," then "a full pause at the end of a sentence" (1580s). The educational sense of "portion of time set apart for a lesson" is from 1876. The sporting sense "division of a game or contest" is attested by 1898. As an adjective from 1905; period piece is attested from 1911.

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periodontal (adj.)

"surrounding a tooth, pertaining to the lining membrane of the socket of a tooth," 1848, literally "around the tooth," from peri- "around" + Greek odon (genitive odontos) "tooth" (from PIE root *dent- "tooth").

periorbital (adj.)

"of or pertaining to the orbit of the eye," 1838, from medical Latin periorbita, a hybrid from Greek peri "around, about, near" (see peri-) + Latin orbita (see orbit).

periosteum (n.)

"the enveloping membrane of the bones," 1590s, from Modern Latin periosteum, Late Latin periosteon, from Greek periosteon, neuter of periosteos "round the bones," from peri "around, about" (see peri-) + osteon "bone" (from PIE root *ost- "bone"). Related: Periosteal.

peripatetic (n.)

mid-15c., Peripatetik, "a disciple of Aristotle, one of the set of philosophers who followed the teachings of Aristotle," from Old French perypatetique (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin peripateticus "pertaining to the disciples or philosophy of Aristotle," from Greek peripatētikos "given to walking about" (especially while teaching), from peripatein "walk up and down, walk about," from peri "around, about" (see peri-) + patein "to walk, tread" (see find (v.)). Aristotle's custom was to teach while strolling through the Lyceum in Athens.

In English, the philosophical meaning is older than that of "person who wanders about" (1610s). As an adjective, "walking about from place to place, itinerant," from 1640s, often with a tinge of humor. Related: Peripatetical.

peripeteia (n.)

also peripetia, "that part of a drama in which the plot is tied together and the whole concludes, the denouement," 1590s, from Greek peripeteia "a turn right about; a sudden change" (of fortune, in a tragedy), from peri "around" (see peri-) + stem of piptein "to fall," from PIE *pi-pt-, reduplicated form of root *pet- "to rush; to fly."

periphery (n.)

late 14c., periferie, "atmosphere around the earth," from Old French periferie (Modern French périphérie) and directly from Medieval Latin periferia, from Late Latin peripheria, from Greek peripheria "circumference, outer surface, line round a circular body," literally "a carrying around," from peripheres "rounded, moving round, revolving," peripherein "carry or move round," from peri "round about" (see peri-) + pherein "to carry," from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry."

In geometry, the meaning "outside boundary of a closed figure," especially the circumference of a circle, is attested in English from 1570s; the general sense of "boundary, surface" is from 1660s.

periphrasis (n.)

"roundabout way of speaking; an instance of this," 1530s, from Latin periphrasis "circumlocution," from Greek periphrasis, from periphrazein "speak in a roundabout way," from peri "around, about" (see peri-) + phrazein "to express" (see phrase (n.)).

Periphrasis is also known as circumlocution; but the term periphrasis generally refers to those cases where the figure is used with effect, while "circumlocution" refers to its faulty use. Periphrasis may be defined as naming a thing indirectly by means of some well-known attribute, or characteristic, or attendant circumstance. [James De Mille, "The Elements of Rhetoric," 1878]
Periscian (adj.)

1590s, "of or pertaining to the Periscii," the inhabitants of the Polar circle in ancient Greek imagination, literally (those) "throwing a shadow all round," from peri "round about" (see peri-) + skia "shade, shadow" (see, and compare, Ascians). So called because their shadows would revolve around them during the course of a summer day, when the sun is always above the horizon there.

periscope (n.)

viewing apparatus on a submarine, by which objects in a horizontal view may be seen through a vertical tube, 1899, formed in English from peri- "around" + -scope "instrument for viewing." Earlier (1865) a technical term in photography. Related: Periscopic.

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