combining form

: rodlike structure
: striated muscle fiber

Word History


borrowed from Greek, combining form from rhábdos "rod, wand, streak or stripe on an animal," of uncertain origin

Note: The Greek word has been taken as going back to *u̯r̥b(h)-, and hence related to Old Church Slavic vrĭbije "willows (collective)," Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian vŕba "willow," and Lithuanian vir̃bas "twig, switch, rod" (see vervain). The suffix -do- is variously accounted for; Chantraine (Dictionnaire étymologique de la langue grecque) characterizes formations with the suffix -do- as "often expressive" ("souvent expressif"). R. Beekes (Etymological Dictionary of Greek, Brill, 2009) regards rhábdos as well as rhámnos "buckthorn" as of pre-Greek substratal origin.

Dictionary Entries Near rhabdo-

Cite this Entry

“Rhabdo-.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rhabdo-. Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

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