\ \ [17] In ancient Rome, small discs or tokens made of ‘brass’ (Latin aes, a descendant, like English ore [OE], of Indo-European *ajes) used for counting were known as area. In due course this developed the metaphorical meaning ‘number as a basis for calculation’, and from around the 5th century AD it came to be used in Spain, North Africa, and southern Gaul as a prefix for dates, some what analogous to modern English AD. By extension it was then applied to a ‘system of chronological notation, as dated from a particular event or point in time’, the sense in which English acquired the word. The more general ‘historical period’ is an 18thcentury semantic development.
\ \ Cf.ORE

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

Игры ⚽ Поможем сделать НИР
(marked by any administration or dispensation) / , , , , / (from which dates are reckoned), ,

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