Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Supercilious literally means "eyebrow" in Latin. Because when people (apparently even ancient Latin people) are haughty, they raise their eyebrows in disdain.

So great.

Language rocks.


1529, from L. superciliosus "haughty, arrogant," from supercilium "haughty demeanor, pride," lit. "eyebrow" (via notion of raising the eyebrow to express haughtiness), from super "above" (see super-) + cilium "eyelid," related to celare "to cover, hide," from PIE base *kel- "to conceal" (see cell).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2001 Douglas Harper

No comments: