Latin Roots of "Communication"
"Communication" is a word with a rich history. From the Latin communicare, meaning to impart, share, or make common, it entered the English language in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The key root is mun- (not uni-), related to such words as "munificent," "community," "meaning," and Gemeinschaft. The Latin munus has to do with gifts or duties offered publicly--including gladitorial shows, tributes, and rites to honor the dead. In Latin, communicatio did not signify the general arts of human connection via symbols, nor did it suggest the hope for some kind of mutual recognition. Its sense was not in the least mentalistic: communicatio generally involved tangibles."
Related Latin Words
commūnicāīti/ō -ōīnis f. imparting; (rhet.) making the audience appear to take part in the discussion.
commūīnic/ō -āīre -āīv ī -āītum vt. Share (by giving or receiving); impart, communicate. cōnsilia cum make common cause with.
commūīn/iō -īīre -īīvi & -iī -aītum vt. build (a fortification); fortify; strengthen.
commūīni/ō -ōīnis f. sharing in common, communion.
commūīn/is a. common, general, universal; (person) affable, democratic. -ia loca public places. -ēs locī general topics. -is sēnsus popular sentiment. Aliquid -e habēre have something in common. -ē -is n. common property; state. in -e for a common end; equally; in general. -iter adj. in common, jointly.
commūīnt/ās -ā-tis f. fellowship; sense of fellowship; affability.
commūnīītiō -ōīnis f. preparing the way.
~Collins Latin Gem Dictionary (London, 1961)
Updated March 17, 2001