Trel (trellia_chan) wrote in 1word1day,

Wednesday word: fomite


noun:  A fomite is any object (like a dish, a doorknob, or a phone) that is capable of being contaminated with infectious organisms and transmitting them from person to person.

etymology:  First known use in English was in the early 1800s.  Originated from Italian physician Girolamo Fracastoro's use of the Latin word fomes (meaning tinder) in this context in an essay he wrote on contagion in 1546. The plural for fomes is fomites, which is how the modern English singular "fomite" developed.
Tags: f, latin, medical, noun, wordsmith: trellia_chan

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