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The Alphabetary Heraldic

Genealogical Glossary


Mbundu : Kimbundu.

Mc- : Mac-.

Mco : Méjico : [Sp] Mexico.

md : matrilineal descent line.[62]

md. : married.

Md. : MD : Maryland.

-me : -m : -ma : [Gk] result of.

me : the oblique case of the first-person pronoun I.

Me. : ME : Maine.

mea voluptes : my love.

meal : [Sx] food, repast; the act of eating at a certain time.  Cf. breakfast, lunch, dinner, supper, tea.

meander : maze, labyrinth; serpentine winding.  The word derived from the River Meander in Phrygia, now western Turkey, which has a winding and fluctuating course.  Cf. Calamus.

measure : a solemn dance marked by slow and stately movements.  Shakespeare featured the measure in Much Ado About Nothing, and at Capulet’s house in Romeo and Juliet.[63]

Medb : Aife and Medb.  Cf. Scáthach.

medi- : middle.

mediation : interposition, intervention, intercession.

mediator : mediateur : [Fr] one who intervenes or intercedes between two parties, a common friend summoned to act as a fair agent between two parties.

mediatrix : mediatress : a female mediator.

medical genetics : the study of genetic symptoms and causes, and the development of practical methods for the prevention and treatment of genetic disorders.  Cf. molecular genetics.

medical pedigree : genogram, a pedigree drawn expressly to show the probabilities of genetic transmission.  A medical pedigree typically consists of circles representing women and squares representing men.  Cf. diagram, genogram, pedigree.

Medicinæ Baccalaureus : M.B. : Bachelor of Medicine.

medicine : medicina : physic, any remedy recommended by a physician.

medicine men : joya [Sp], mahu [Polynesian], winkte [Lakota].  Cf. American shaman transvestites.

medicine women : hwame [Pima], koskalada [Lakota], Sahacat, tsecat [Madagascar].

medicus : physician.

medicus invidiæ : a phallus hung under a car as a charm against the evil eye (invidiæ), envy, or ill will.

medium ævum : ætas iuventas : youthful manhood, 28 to 48 years, or 20 to 45 years; middle age.

Medusa : Queen of the Gorgons.

meeting : a scheduled congregation of two or more persons, to perform some transaction, job, task, or consultancy.  A meeting planned for some future time may be called an appointment.  A meeting in general may be one of the past, present, or future.  Cf. calendar subdivision, constitutum, appointment, event, meeting.

mega- : [Gk] great, magna.

mega- : megal- : [Gk] large, a million.

megal- : mega- : [Gk] large, a million.

mèi : mei : [Ch] Si(y); younger sister, younger woman of Ego’s generation.  Cf. mai [SJ]; imōto [Jp].

meibion : [We] son.  Cf. mab.

mèifū : [Ch] Si(y)Hu; younger sister’s husband, younger sororal brother-in-law.

meio : to urinate.  Cf. mingo.

meisje : [Du] girl.

melan- : [Gk] black, dark.

melancholy : [Gk] a pensive, gloomy, and discontented temper; madness wherein the madman focuses upon one object; a disease once believed to arise through an excess of black bile.

mem. : member, membership; memorial.

Members of Parliament : [address] ——, M.P.

membra : sexual organ; a term used 13 times by Ovid.

membra genitalia : genital members.

membrum virile : penis.

memento : a memorial notice designed to awaken the memory; a token of remembrance.

memoranda : memorandums, notes that stimulate the memory.

memorandum : a note to prompt the memory.

memorial : monument, something designed to preserve memory; a bill, invoice, or statement one sends to remind the correspondent of services performed, and soliciting remuneration and reward for those services.

memory : memoria : reminiscence, recollection, retention; time of knowledge; the power of retaining or recollecting things and events past.

-men : result of.

men : the plural form of man.

Men of Intelligence : [1411] a group of Free Spirits who were condemned for preaching nudism and free love, and were therefore banished to Cambrai.  Cf. Free Spirit.

ménage à trois : Wi & Hu & He, Hu & Wi & Cc, Ph & Er & Cc, Hu & Wi & Er, Hu & An & He; a sexual partnership of three people, perhaps two men with one woman, or a man with his wife and mistress, or a man with his wife and boy-lover.[64]

menagerie : a personal zoo; the special collection of animals upon one’s estate.  William Randolph Hearst I had a menagerie at San Simeon.

menagery : zoo, a collection of foreign animals; the caged or fences places where animals are kept.

mendicancy : beggary.

mendicant : mendicans : begging; so poor as to resort to beggary.

mendicus : poor, poverty-stricken, homeless.

Menes : 1st King of the 1st Dynasty in Egypt.  Cf. Egyptian chronology, year 1 Menes.

ménfá : [ad 300-600 postea] gate tyrant; guardian of the gate; a system of official recruitment based upon nepotism.  This was a later evolution of the shìzú system.  Cf. cóngfă, shìzú.

mening- : [Gk] membrane.

men-killing as requisite to marriage : Cf. Sarmatians.

Mennonite : [1565] Anabaptist.

menology : [Gk] a register of months.

menopause : [1872] change of life, the period during which menstruation naturally stops, usually between the ages of 45 and 50 years.  Some claim that menopause can occur as early as 35 years, or as late as 65 years.  Cf. 46 years.

menor : [Sp] youngest; minor.

men-pleaser : one devoted to the pleasures of other men.

mensis : month.

mensis currentis : m.c. : this month, present month.

mensis præteriti : m.p. : preceding months, months gone by, past months.

menstrual : menstruus : monthly; pertaining to a menstruum.

menstruation : [1776] a woman’s period; the discharge of blood, secretions, and tissue debris from the uterus that recurs at intervals of approximately one month, and that stops during pregnancies.  A female primate of breeding age normally experiences menstruation throughout her youthful adulthood, except during pregnancies.  Proliferative changes occur within the uterus during ovulation, and menstruation is thought to be a natural readjustment of the uterus, returning it to a nonpregnant condition.  Christians regarded menstruation as a period of defilement and pollation, and therefore caused ovulating women to be barred from attending church.[65]  Cf. churching, menopause.

menstruum : a woman’s period; a liquor used as a solvent; the extraction of the virtues of ingredients by infusion.

-ment : result of.

ment. : mentioned.

menta : spearmint stalk.

mental illnesses : bipolar or manic-depressive disorder; schizophrenia.

mental retardation : Down’s syndrome or phenylketonuria.

mentula : a diminutive of menta.

mentula : penis.  The Romance terms were caraculum and virga.  The low-class terms are strutheum, titus, turtur.

mentula languida : flacid penis.

mentula rigida : erect penis, hard-on.

mentulam caco : to defile the penis with fecal matter.

MEP : Member, European Parliament.

mer- : [Gk] part.

mercenary : a prostitute soldier serving an alien government for pay and adventurism, rather than for duty and patriotism.  Charles I employed Hessian mercenaries during the English Civil Wars, and George III used the same during the War of the American Revolution.  Mercenary warfare still exists, but the terminology has radically changed, because international politics and military strategies have grown so complex since the Napoléonic wars.  The Cold War (1948-1973) was mainly a vicarious conflict between superstates, actually waged by local armies that were subsidized and trained by the superstates.  In violation of U.S. law, President Reagan secretly financed a rebel army in Nicaragua by selling arms to Iran in the 1980s.  In violation of the sacrosanct Monroe Doctrine, President Bush accepted funding from the Emirate of Kuwait and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to wage the Gulf War of Kuwaiti Succession (1990-1991), against Iraq.  Cf. Executive Outcomes.

mercenary : mercenaire : [Fr] hireling; someone retained; someone serving for pay.

mercer : [Fr] mercier, one who sells silks.

merces : wages.

merch : [We] daughter.

merch : [We] girl, daughter.  The word merch mutates after y, and becomes -y ferch.

merchandise : to trade, traffick, engage in commerce.

merchant : mercans [Lt] : marchand [Fr] : one who trafficks goods in remote countries; a ship of trade.

merchantman : a ship of trade.

Mercia : a Saxon kingdom in central England, that occupied the region between Wales and East Anglia.

Mercury : the Cretan inventor of the alphabet with 13 consonants, which he took to Egypt.  Cadmus brought the alphabet back from Egypt to Greece, and added 3 letters to make 16 consonants.  Mercury purportedly learned of the symbols by watching the flights of migrating geese.  The Etruscans, also called Tyrrhenians, were originally Cretan, and they revered the crane as a sacred animal.  Cf. Thoth.

Mercury : the second of seven planets, which apparently returns to the same heavenly spot each year.

mercury : water : ▽ the descending triangle : ♥ the suit called Hearts : ä the Hebrew letter : the sign – meaning subtraction; the mark – denoting places.  Cf. water.

merda : excrement, dung of animals; dross of metal.  Cf. stercus, fimus.

mère : [Fr] mother.

meretrix : Cf. nobilissima meretrix.

merge : to fuse together, to join by fusion; to unite one peerage with another.  Opp. fission, ramage.  Cf. destination.

merged : the union of one peerage with another.

merging : a grouping of kinsfolk into a single classificatory set, irrespective of their lineal and collateral positions.  The Hawaiians make no distinction between siblings and cousins, so they merge into a single class all of their cousins, brothers, and sisters (Br, Si, FaBrSo, FaSiSo, et cetera).  Among the ancient Chinese, it was customary to merge into a single class one’s father and paternal uncles (Fa, FaBr), and one’s mother and maternal aunts (Mo, MoSi).

meridian : meridies : midday, noon; the line drawn to show North to South when the sun crosses the line at noon.

meridies : meridian, noon.  Cf. meridian.

Merions. : Merioneth.

merit : meritum [Lt] : merite [Fr] : desert; excellence of performance deserving honor and reward.

meritocracy : [1958] a system of education or employment wherein people are advanced on the basis of individual achievement.  The term was devised, and is still used today, as a conservative argument against affirmative action.  The concept of meritocracy surely sounds fair and laudable, but the motives behind the concept are fundamentally racist and sexist.  Cf. affirmative action.

mērízein : English method.  Cf. intercrural copulation.

merriment : cheerfulness, mirth, gaiety, laughter.

Merry Andrew : buffoon, zany, jack-pudding.  The expression originated in the name of Henry VIII’s physician Andrew Borde.

mes- : [Gk] middle.

mes : [Sp] month.

mésalliance : [1782] marriage with a person of in­ferior social position.

mese : [It] month.

meseems : it seems to me, it appears to me; I think, methinks.

mesmerism : [1784] hypnotism; hypnotic suggestion attributed to animal magnetism.  The term had its origin in a famous stage act performed by F.A. Mesmer.

meso- : [Gk] middle, medium.

mesomorphy : the second physical component based upon the development of bones, muscles, connective tissues, and the cardiovascular system, typical of athletic humans.[66]

Mesopotamian chronology : [2670 bc, vel 2335 bc] Cf. Sargon I, Saros Cycle, Ur Dynasty, year 2335 bc.

Mesozoic era : a long period of prehistoric time, consisting of the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods.  Cf. year 143 million bc, year 246 million bc.

message : errand, any secret or instruction imparted to another for conveyance to a third party.

Messrs. : Messieurs : [Fr] plural of Monsieur; plural of Mister.  This courtesy title was initially used to dignify any plurality of men, but it came to be used as a polite title for any partnership, and even for any company of persons belonging to both sexes.  It has fallen into general disuse by Americans, who prefer to write simply the name of an organization or corporation with no courtesy title whatsoever.  Americans have adopted the custom of directing correspondence to specific contacts, or individuals working within companies, and therefore tend to apply a courtesy title to the individual’s name, rather than the company-at-large.  However, international firms still preserve the custom of addressing a business with Messrs. preceding the name.  It is now polite and customary to use this title to address a same-sex couple of males.  Cf. Mmes., Mesdames.

messuage : messuagium : dwelling-house with adjacent build­ings and cur­tilage, the house and grounds in a manor set apart for household uses.

mesta : mestiza : [Sp contraction] Spanish-Native.

mesto : mestizo : [Sp] Spanish-Native.

meta- : [Gk] beyond, ultra.

metaculture : cultural elements and rules that lie behind or beyond the apparent features of a society.  A metaculture transcends the mundane culture, and preserves the basic rules for cultural transformation.  Cf. culture, metaculture, subculture, supraculture, transculture.

metae Murciae : the goal stone of Murcia, which marks the spot where King Tarquin founded his circus, between the Aventine Hill and Palatine Hill in Rome.  Cf. Murcia.

metagrammatism : [Gk] the transpositon of the letters in a name, performed to demonstrate some new meaning pertinent to the subject.

metagraphy : written symbols used to represent special ideas and terms, such as logical, philosophical, or metaphorical concepts.

metaphor : [Gk] the application of a word to some extraordinary use.  A metaphor expresses a simile in a single word.

-meter : [Gk] measure, mensura, modus, ratio.

meter : metrum : verse, measure; speech confined to a certain number and harmonic disposition of syllables.

methinks : it seems to me, I think; meseems.

Methodism : [1593-1784] a loosely organized movement within the Church of England that eventually led to the foundation of Methodist churches (1739), and the revival called Weslyan Methodism (1784).

Methodism : [1784] the religious opinions of Methodists.

Methodist : [1784] an observer of method in either physic or religion; a follower of Wesley and Whitfield.

Methodists : [inde 1715] Protestant Dissenters; one of the four New Dissenter sects that grew in influence after the ‘Fifteen Rebellion (1715).  Cf. Congregationalists, Dissenter sects, Moravians, Unitarians.

methought : I thought; it appeared to me.

methuselah or impériale : a large wine botttle, six or eight times (6x or 8x) the normal size.  Cf. bottle sizes.

Metonic Cycle : [430 bc] 19 solar years of 365.25 days each, as the equivalent of 235 lunations, plus 5 days; 6,940 days.  The cycle provides 110 hollow months of 29 days each, and 125 full months of 30 days each, making 6,935 days.  The intercalation of an additional 5 days adjusts the lunations to match the solar-year count of 6,940 days.  Thus, the Metonic solar year equals 365.25 days.  Cf. Callippic Cycle; Golden Number.

metonymy : euphemisms for sexual acts.

Metrobios : Cf. Sulla and Metrobios.

metropolis : mother city, the chief city of some country or district.

-metry : [Gk] art or science of measuring.

meum cor : my heart, my love.

mew : a cage for hawks.  The king kept his hawks at King’s Mews, near Charing Cross, London.

mewyng & kepying of ye Goshawks : [1519/9/14-11/15] the caging and care of the goshawks.

mewl : to screem and squall as a child.

Mex : Mexican, Mexico.

MexSp : Mexican Spanish.

MGk : Middle Greek.

MHG : Middle High German.

mi. : mile, miles.

Mich. : MI : Michigan.

Michaelangelo : the painter who wrote love poetry to other men.  His nephew disguised his uncle’s sexual orientation, for he published the poetry after changing the pronouns.[67]

Michaelis : Michael.

Michaelmas : Mighelmas[68] : [1524] 29 September, the Feast of Archangel Michael.  Cf. reckoning by weeks from 29 September.

micr- : [Gk] small, one millionth part of.

micro- : [Gk] small, parvus, minutus, brevis.

Microsoft 1904 Date System : [1997] a series of Julian Day numbers that starts on 2 January 1904 (number 1), and ends on 31 December 9999 (number 2957063).  This is the default date system for Microsoft Excel 97 for Macintosh.

Microsoft 1900 Date System : [1997] a series of Julian Day numbers that starts on 1 January 1900 (number 1), and ends on 31 December 9999 (number 2958525.  Numbers to the right of the decimal point signify the date, but numbers to the left signify the time, such that the serial number 367.5 stands for 12 o’clock p.m. 1 January 1901.  The 1900 Date System is the default for Microsoft Excel 97 for Windows.

Microsoft Corporation : [1997] a company that generates some peculiar English sentences.  The company insists upon using awkward, rambling, and imprecise phraseology, and compounds its errors by presenting literary and scientific expressions together with contractions and base vernacular forms.

Microsoft Outlook Calendar : 1603/4/1 Tue MS through 4500/8/29 Sun MS are the valid viewing dates of the Outlook Calendar.  Outlook does not permit ‘go to’ searches any farther back in history than 1 April 1603, but the user can access earlier months by first going to 1 April 1603, and then using the cursor to travel back through perpetual calendar.  Outlook displays 4500/8/29 Sun without any problem, and clearly shows August 29 as falling on Sunday.  However, if the Outlook user ventures to print the month August 4500, Outlook will print instead August 2000, and the same date August 29 will fall on Tuesday 29 August 2000, instead of the displayed day Microsoft reckons will occur on Sunday 29 August 4500 MS, showing a loss of 2 days.  Outlook provides a series of perpetual calendars covering something less than 2,898 years, from 1 April 1603 to 29 August 4500.  Thus, Microsoft devotes some 396 years to the past, but some 2,502 years to the future.  Users are given a ratio of roughly 1 to 6:  one year past for every six years in the future.  This might please persons with promising futures, and might someday please the archivists who retrieve our data.  However, a backward limit of April 1603 cannot please a historian.  Cf. Brøderbund Family Tree Maker Calendar, year 1607, year 1608.

Microsoft Reckoning : MS : The Microsoft Outlook 97 Calendar began on 1 April 1601 and ended on 29 August 4500, (1601/4/1-4500/8/29).  Cf. Brøderbund Reckoning, reckoning.

midage : the middle age of life, the state of a person middle aged.

midday : at noon, meridional.

middle aged : around the middle of life.

middle childhood : Cf. individuation.

middle class : [Am] the class to which most Americans claimed membership from the 1960s to 1970s.

Middle English : [1100-1500] Anglo-Saxon English written in the first four centuries after Danelaw.

Middlesexa : Middlesex.

Middlesexia : Middlessex.

Middlessex : Middx. : Middlesexa : Middlesexia.

midlenting : visiting one’s parents at mid Lent.

midship : the several timbers that lie at the broadest part of a vessel.

midshipman : an officer aboard ship who ranks next to a lieutenant.

midsummer : 21 June, the summer solstice.

Midsummer : 24 June, Saint John the Baptist Day.  Cf. calendar year.

midwife : mydwiffe : obstetrix, a woman who provides assistance during childbirth.  Gurney explained that a Tudor midwife normally carried a dispensation from the bishop, so that she could baptize a child stillborn or dying.[69]  the Lady le Strange recorded that “my Mrs Mydwiffe & her wyffes stayed the whole week of 15273/24-3/31.  Cf. man-midwife, accoucheur.

midwife’s reward : [1787] 6s 8p was the reward Martha Ballard received for midwifery in Massachusetts about 1787.

midwinter : 21 December, the winter solstice.

Miercoles : [Sp] Wednesday.

mies : [Fi] man, husband.

mignon : minion.

migration : migratio : removal, change of place, the act of changing one’s residence.

migratory age and sex : [1900-1920]  Many European immigrants in the early twentieth century were young men, ranging in age between 18 and 28 years.  It was customary among the Irish, Italians, and Czechs to dispatch to America the son most capable of success, so as to establish a foothold, where other family members could subsequently migrate.[70]  Similar migration practices may be seen today in America, among other ethnic groups, such as the Arabs, Koreans, and Fiji Islanders.

Mike Hammer syndrome : the state of a completely virile man who inclines to brutality, but has an aversion to effeminacy, tenderness, and gentility.[71]  This equates to the behavior of a Caesar type.  Cf. Lolita syndrome.

m-i-l : mother-in-law.

mil. : militar : [Sp] soldier.

Mil. : Militia.

mild joking relationship :  a pattern of familiarity between two individuals that may permit the diffusion of conflict, even when there exists no particular social necessity to avoid conflict.[72]  Mild joking often serves to complement respect.  Cf. jocular relationship, obligatory joking relationship, relationship.

mile : [Ba] 1,760 yards.

mile : [Sx] 1,760 yards, a measure of roads in England and America.

miles : a well-born knight; horseman; cavalryman; champion. Cf. armiger, ensiger.

miles ejusdem familiæ longo post tempore : a knight of the same family at a much later time.[73]

miles ordinis garterii : Knight Ordinary of the Garter.[74]

milit- : soldier.

milit. : military.

military : militaris : warlike, soldierly; suiting a soldier, pertaining to a soldier; effected by soldiers.

military ranks : [1596] The Elizabethan army serving in France was divided into companies of 200 men each, and the ranks within each company were those of captain (8s per day), lieutenant (4s), ensign (2s), sergeant, drummer, surgeon (each paid 1s or 12d per day), and soldier (8d per day).

military scandals : the several controversies in the U.S. military that have reflected the racism, sexism, homophobia, and xenophobia of American society at large.  Cf. adultery in the military, blacks in the military, gays in the military, genocide, Tailhook scandal, women in the military.

military units : the basic organizational units in the U.S. armed forces, namely the division aboard a ship (USN), the company (U.S. Army), and the squadron (USAF).

milites : men-at-arms, esquires; knights.

milites regis : king’s knight, a rank higher than valettus regis ‘king’s yeoman or valet.’[75]

militia : trainbands, the standing army of a nation or state.  The word militia originally referred to a company of knights assembled for service, which normally lasted 40 days.  The term eventually came to specify a local reserve force, consisting mainly of volunteers, who could be mustered on short notice to augment an army of regulars.  American militias organized for the War of the American Revolution customarily asked their members to serve 90 days at a time, which is why pension applications often speak for terms of service lasting 3 months each.  Today, the term generally refers to a state militia in contrast to the federal U.S. Army.

milk and bread : Cf. bread and drink.

milk crust : small, red, and itchy pimples on the face or scalp of infants or children, which burst to exude a sticky substance that forms a yellow crust.

milk leg : thrombosis in femoral vein, which typically occurs after childbirth; phlebitis, inflammation of the leg which sometimes occurs two to seven weeks after a mother gives birth.  Milk leg can appear as a symptom of a pulmonary embolism or pelvic infection, that sometimes leads to death.

milk sickness : trembles : a disease marked by nausea, vomiting, general debility, and a peculiar odor on the breath.  Milk sickness was believed to be caused by the ingestion of a certain plant which habitually grew on level wetlands heavily wooded with oak, typical of the West, or by the ingestion of some animal who has grazed on the plant.

milkmaid : a woman employed in a dairy.

milkwoman : a woman whose business it is to deliver milk to families.

Milky Way : galaxy; the broad white band or path crossing the heavens, comprised of the stars of our galaxy.

mill : [1806] money of account equal to one-tenth of a cent; one thousandth part of a dollar, $0.001.  There was never any coin in this denomination, but the unit survives today as an accounting unit for property taxation, and the like.

mill- : thousand.

millennial generation : [1985-2004] generation Y.

millennium : 1000 years.

millennium : one thousand years; the first millenium after Christ, the years 1-1000 ad; second millenium, the years 1001-2000 ad.

millionaires : wealthy persons having a net worth of more than $1 million.  The top 3% of Americans are millionaires, and as a group they tend to save an average of 15% of their income.

millrind : the iron axle affixed to the center of a millstone.

mim- : [Gk] to imitate.

mimæ : prostitute mimes who performed obscene acts at the festival of Floralia in April each year.[76]

min. : minister, minor.

minae : battlements, parapets of a wall.[77]

ming : [2852-221 bc, Ch] a common name used by family of low status.  The ming has evolved into the modern postname (ming, mei) in Chinese and Japanese.[78]  Cf. Chinese surname classes, postname.

mingo : to urinate.  Cf. meio.

mingu-ga : [Omaha and Ponca] a shaman male, magician.

minima natu : youngest female.  Cf. natu.

minimal lineage : one’s basic lineage, defined as a parent link, together with the sibling and child links that extend or complement the lineage.  A minimal lineage may be subdivided into a restrictive minor segment, and an inclusive major segment of kindred.  Cf. lineages and segments.  Opp. maximal lineage.

minimus natu : youngest male.  Cf. natu.

minion : mignon : [Fr] Er; favorite, darling, a low dependent.  The word purportedly derived from minet ‘kitty cat,’ and the suffix -on modified the word to mean something like ‘large kitty cat.’  The lovers of Edward II of England, Henri III of France, and other monarchs were collectively called mignons.  Cf. agouroi.

minionship : the state of a favorite.

minister : agent, official, delegate; employee of the government; one who performs sacerdotal functions at the altar.  A person who acts as an agent for a foreign power but who lacks the authority of an ambassador is called a minister.

Minister of the Gospels : M.G. : the formal title of a minister or preacher, typically in a Baptist church.

ministrative : [1400] pertaining to ministration, or the duties of a clergyman.  Cf. genealogical adjectives.

ministress : she who supplies or dispenses.

ministry : ministerium : office, service, an ecclesiastical function; people employed in government service.

Minn. : MN : Minnesota.

mino : mr : ministro : [Sp contraction] minister.

minor- : minus- : minut- : small, smaller.

minor : one under age; the second proposition or particular proposition of a syllogism.  Opp. major.

minor ætatis : in his minority.

minoris : younger, lesser.

minority : the state of being underage; being of an age less than majority.

Minos and Ganymede : Cf. Ganymede.

minster : [Sx] monastery, a cathedral church; an ecclesiastical fraternity.

minstrel : mynstrell : a wandering musician.  We have one example of Thomas le Strange having awarded to a Mynstrell at Newmarkett a gratuity of 4d in 1519.[79]

minuet : menuet : [Fr] a stately and regular dance.

minus- : minor- : minut- : small, smaller.

minuscule : lowercase letter.

minut- : minor- : minus- : small, smaller.

minute : [Ba] 60 seconds.

minute : minutum : the sixtieth part of an hour; any small period of time.

minutes : the first draft of any written agreement; a notation of things done and things to do.

Miocene epoch : year 26 million bc.

mis- : [Gk] hatred.

mis : [We] month.

Mis : Marquis : [Fr] Marquis, Marquess, Marcher.

mis- : miss- : mit- : mitt- : to send, let go.

misc- : to mix.

miscarriage : spontaneous abortion, bringing forth before term; abortus, abortio, mors antesuscepto, morte in aqua embrio, non vivus.

miscarry : to fail; to spontaneously abort one’s child.

miscere : merged.  Cf. peerage.

mischief : meschef : [Fr] hurt, harm, vexatious affair; ill consequence.

Mise : Marquise : [Fr] Marchioness.

Mise : the goddess worshipped by women using sacred dildos.[80]  Cf. Bona Dea, dildos, Pudicitia.

miser : poor, wretched, pitiable.  Cf. infelix, miserandus.

miserandus : poor, wretched, pitiable.  Cf. infelix, miser.

misericord : a bracket covertly attached to the bottom of a choir seat, which provides a support for a choirboy whenever he must turn up his seat and stand in place for some long period during a service.[81]

misericord : a long and narrow dagger used to deliver the coup de grâce, or the final and fatal blow, ending a military contest.

misericord : a penitentiary within a monastery where monks eat a bland diet and perform penitence in contrition for sin.

misericordia : mercy, compassion, pity.

mishap : calamity, ill luck, ill chance.

mishchav zachur : [Hb] gay.

misjudgement : an unjust judgement; an unjust determination.

mismanagement : ill conduct, ill management.

mismating : the practice of sexual relations that are forbidden by society, but which do not violate any prohibition of incest.  Cf. incest, same-sex marriage, status unchastity.

mismo : [Sp] same.

misnomer : a wrong name; a pseudonym by which an indictment or other act may be vacated.

misogamist : someone who hates marriage.

misogynist : a woman hater.

misrelation : erroneous relation.

Miss : [contraction] Mistress.  This particular abbreviation came to signify a maiden or unmarried woman, whereas the alternative abbreviation Mrs. came to signified a married woman.  The basic title Mistress was the foundation for both abbreviations Mrs. and Miss.  Cf. Mister, Ms.

miss- : mis- : mit- : mitt- : to send, let go.

miss : mistress : a term of honor used for a young girl; strumpet, concubine.  Cf. Mrs., Ms.

Miss. : MS : Mississippi.

missionary : missionaire : [Fr] someone dispatched to propagate religion.

missionary position : the posture for frontal sex, typical of Euro-American cultures.[82]

missive : a letter sent; a messenger.

missle : missilis : striking at a distance; thrown by the hand.

Mister : Mr : Mr. : [1551, contraction] Hu; master; a style of courtesy that came in common use during the sixteenth century, and specifically denoted a member of the gentry rank.  Such a gentleman was regarded as higher than a commoner, but lower than a nobleman or knight.  The title was a lower ranking correlative to Sir or Lord, and was probably popularized by its regular use in military and naval discipline.  It became a general courtesy title that now enjoys ubiquitous use, and sometimes appears as a pronominal to office titles, as in Mr. President or Mr. Speaker.  Cf. Messieurs., Sir.  Opp. Mistress.

mistress : [1603] the target bowl in a game of bowls.  Cf. bowls.

Mistress : Mrs : Mrs. : mâitresse [Fr] : [1612 En contraction] Wi; a style of courtesy for a gentlewoman that came into use in the early seventeenth century; the female correlative of Mister.  Mistress and related kinship terms oc­curred in Chaucer and other English works prior to the fourteenth century, but the word’s ordinary use did not arise until much later.  In early periods, it sometimes referred to a widow, and it sometimes denoted a woman of any marital status; but in later periods, the term came to be used exclusively as a courtesy title for a married woman.  Cf. Miss., Mister.

mit- : mild, soft.

mit- : mis- : miss- : mitt- : to send, let go.

Mithra and the Bull : By the agency of a raven herald, the Sun commanded Mithra to slay the Bull.  Mithra believed it was sacreligious to kill a bull, and therefore was reluctant to do so, but finally discharged his duty.  Ambushing the Bull as it left its cave, Mithra killed it with his hunting knife.  The Bull’s body gave life to herbs and plants, its spine produced wheat, and its blood transformed into the vine.  The Moon collected and purified the seed of the Bull, and thereby created all the animals.  For his horticultural and corporeal gifts to the world, the Bull was translated to Heaven, where he was honored, and then transformed into Silvanus (Mithra), God of Gardens, lover of the beautiful youth Cyparissus.[83]

mitochondria : the organelles that provide energy for cellular life, which are fundamental to human reproduction, and therefore tend to mutate far less often than nucleaic parts.  Cf. maternal endowment.

mitochondrial DNA : DNA extracted from variously shaped cellular organelles that surround a nucleus and produce energy for a cell through cellular respiration.  Mitochondril DNA tends to mutate or change at a very slow pace, and normally passes unchanged from mother to child, so the DNA from mitochondria may be used to identify extremely ancient maternal lines of direct descent.  Geneticists have claimed to link through DNA evidence one living resident in Cheddar, England, with the Cheddar Man skeleton which is some 9,000 years old, and was discovered in caves beneath Cheddar in 1903.[84]  Cheddar Man purportedly related to the modern teacher through some maternal line.

mitochondrion : [1901] ‘thread+grain,’ a collection of cellular organelles surrounding the nucleus of a cell and consisting mainly of basic fats, proteins, and enzymes.

mitre : a round cap, pointed and cleft at the top, and surmounted with a fillet of gold set with precious stones.  From the mitre hang two pendants, fringed at the ends.  The mitre serves as the symbol of office of an archbishop or bishop, and is depicted over the arms of a bishop.

mitre of the Bishop of Durham : a conventional mitre issuing out of a ducal crest coronet.  The Bishop of Durham is nominally recognized as Count Palantine of Durham, which accounts for the addition of the ducal crest coronet.

mitt- : mis- : miss- : mit- : to send, let go.

mixed descent : the quality of belonging to a unilineal descent through two or more distinct lines of unilateral descent; the happenstance of an ego being a parallel cousin to himself.  There are two kinds of mixed descent, namely (1) sex-linked mixed descent that affiliates males patrilineally, but matrilineally affiliates females, and (2) cross-sex mixed descent that affiliates males matrilineally, but patrilineally affiliates females.[85]  In patriarchies and societies with rigid rules of descent and marriage, this is an extremely rare phenomenon, because the prohibitions against incest tend to prevent it.  However, Anglo-Americans often permit first cousins to marry, and when the marrying cousins are parallel cousins, they give rise to descendants of mixed descent.  American genealogies provide some fine examples of mixed descent.  Although the terminology for mixed descent seems to resemble that for cross cousin marriage, it is critical to remember that mixed descent pertains to unilateral and parallel descent, whereas cross cousin unions represent bilateral exchanges.  Cf. cross cousin marriage.

mixis athesmos : [Gk] alien intercourse; the carnal relations that the Sodomites desired with the angels visiting Lot.  This is surely a Greek invention.  Cf. sarkos eteras.

mixtelyn : myxtelyn : a mixture of rye and wheat ground together, from which inferior brown bread is made.[86]

Mlle. : Mademoiselle : [Fr] a courtesy title for an unmarried woman, equivalent to Miss. in English.

MM : Monthly Meeting.

mm. : matrimonium.

MM. : Messrs. : Messieurs.

Mme. : Madame : [Fr] Wi; the French equivalent for Mrs. or Mistress in English.

Mmes. : Mesdames : [Fr] Wi; the plural form of Madame.

mne- : [Gk] to remember.

mnemonic device : Cf. acrophony.

[62] Parkin 1997:  35.

[63] Harrison 1948:  1645-1646.

[64] Eglinton 1964:  131.

[65] Bede.

[66] Sheldon.  Eglinton 1964:  485.

[67] Boswell 1980:  18.

[68] Gurney 1833:  467.1.

[69] 1527/3/24.

[70] Ptak 1995, edition 1997:  13.

[71] Eglinton 1964:  485.

[72] Schusky 1972:  62.

[73] Leland:  2.4.11.

[74] Leland, 5.123.

[75] HL:  307.

[76] Adams 1982:  5.

[77] HL:  62.

[78] Kiang Shao Chuan Kang-Hu, “Genealogy and Family Name Origins of the Chinese Race,” 1915.

[79] HHA 1519.

[80] Grahn 1990:  130.

[81] Davis 1924:  618.

[82] Eglinton 1964:  485.

[83] Hugh Ross Williamson, The Arrow and the Sword.  Grahn 1990:  215.

[84] “Teacher Traced Back to ‘Cheddar Man,’ DNA from 9,000-year-old skeleton,” Associated Press, London, 1997/3/9.

[85] Gillin 1948:  433.  Schusky 1972:  91.

[86] Hollinshed, Description of England.  Gurney 1833:  425.11.l.

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