propinquity

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noun pro·pin·qui·ty \prə-ˈpiŋ-kwə-tē\

Definition of propinquity

  1. 1 :  nearness of blood :  kinship

  2. 2 :  nearness in place or time :  proximity

propinquity was our Word of the Day on 02/06/2012. Hear the podcast!

Examples of propinquity in a sentence

  1. local housing prices, thanks to the propinquity of an especially picturesque beach, are out of the reach of many would-be buyers

Did You Know?

Propinquity and its cousin "proximity" are related through the Latin root prope, which means "near." That root gave rise to "proximus" (the parent of "proximity") and "propinquus" (an ancestor of "propinquity"). "Proximus" is the superlative of "prope" and thus means "nearest," whereas "propinquus" simply means "near" or "akin," but in English "propinquity" conveys a stronger sense of closeness than "proximity." (The latter usually suggests a sense of being in the vicinity of something.) The distinctions between the two words are subtle, however, and they are often used interchangeably. "Propinquity" is believed to be the older of the two words, first appearing in English in the 14th century; "proximity" followed a century later.

Origin and Etymology of propinquity

Middle English propinquite, from Latin propinquitat-, propinquitas kinship, proximity, from propinquus near, akin, from prope near — more at approach


First Known Use: 14th century


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