Sunday, November 20, 2011
Caduceus \kuh-DOO-see-uhs\ or \kuh-DOO-syoos\ or \kuh-DOO-shuhs\ or \kuh-DYOO-shus\ , noun;
Alright, I was definitely more interested in the name of this thing than the etymology. But, if you were wondering, it is first attested in 1591 from Latin caduceus, which derives from Greek kapykeion. Though it's probably most recognizable as a medical symbol, originally it was the wand carried by an ancient Greek or Roman herald, specifically the one carried by Hermes or Mercury as the messenger of the gods. Click the pictures source link to read more about the caduceus and its history.