Etymology of the word ‘Code’

by 5ocietyx

code (n.) c.1300, “systematic compilation of laws,” from Old French code “system of laws, law-book” (13c.), from Latin codex, earlier caudex “book, book of laws,” literally “tree trunk,” hence, book made up of wooden tablets covered with wax for writing. Meaning “cipher” (the sense in secret code) is from 1808.

presumably the ‘cau-‘ in the word ‘caudex’ comes from the latin caulis (n.) meaning stem or stalk of a plant, from where we get the word ‘cauliflower’.

Can we then also presume that ‘-dex’ comes from the Latin ‘dexter’, meaning “skillful, but also “right (hand) the root of which comes from the PIE ‘*deks-‘. meaning on the right hand (see also Sanskrit ‘daksinah’ “on the right hand, southern, skillful;” Avestan ‘dashina’- “on the right hand;” Greek ‘dexios’ “on the right hand,” also “fortunate, clever;” Old Irish ‘dess’ “on the right hand, southern;” Welsh ‘deheu’; Gaulish ‘Dexsiva’, name of a goddess of fortune; Gothic ‘taihswa’; Lithuanian ‘desinas’; Old Church Slavonic ‘desnu’, Russian ‘desnoj’).

So the word ‘code’ breaks down as ‘the stem (of the body) of the skillful right hand’.

 

taken from – http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=code&allowed_in_frame=0

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