before vowels somat-, word-forming element meaning "the body of an organism," from combining form of Greek sōma (genitive sōmatos) "the body, a human body dead or living, body as opposed to spirit; material substance; mass; a person, human being; the whole body or mass of anything," a word of uncertain origin. Perhaps originally "compactness, swelling," and from PIE root *teue- "to swell."

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