Friday, February 8, 2013

Word Mix-Up: NAVAL and NAVEL

NAVAL: The adjective "naval" means having to do with ships, with the navy. It comes from the Latin adjective navalis, which in turn is from the Latin word for ship, navis. You can see that same Latin root in the English word "navigation."

NAVEL: The word "navel" means the belly button. You can also see this word in the phrase "navel orange," which refers to a variety of orange that has a little belly-button-like growth at its apex. The word "navel" is Germanic in origin, not related in any way to the Latinate "naval."

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