Ancient Word of the Day: Emacitus

Hypothetical Banks Notes from Hungary Feature Woodland Animals

Emacitus: The desire to buy things from Latin.

The English version of this word ‘Emacity’ fell out of use at the beginning of the 20th Century. This was replaced by less beautiful terms to describe the same thing, such as shopaholic, consumerism and retail therapy.

A shop in Kyoto with magazines about dogs

Emacitus derives from the even older Proto-Indo-European word Em

You may have heard of the Latin phrase Caveat Emptor – which means buyer beware.

There are many other modern words related to money, trade and transactions that contain the root word Em:


Hypothetical Banks Notes from Hungary Feature Woodland Animals
Hypothetical Banks Notes from Hungary Feature Woodland Animals


Ransom (which comes from the Old French word raenson)

Exempt: comes from the Latin word ex-emptus which means ‘Not for sale’.

Embezzlement: is tampering with documents to steal money.


An Etymological Dictionary of the English Language By Walter W. Skeat (1910)

A Concise Dictionary of Middle English From A.D. 1150 To 1580 by A. L. Mayhew and Walter W. Skeat (1888)

Published by Content Catnip

Content Catnip is a quirky internet wunderkammer written by an Intergalactic Space Māori named Content Catnip. Join me as I meander through the quirky and curious aspects of history, indigenous spirituality, the natural world, animals, art, storytelling, books, philosophy, travel, Māori culture and loads more.

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