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Ancient GreekEdit


Unclear etymology, Pokorny (1959) connects the Greek root φαρ- of φαρόω (pharóō, to plough), φάρυγξ (phárunx, throat), from a Proto-Indo-European *bʰer- (to cut, pierce, scrape) (i.e., a medicinal herb or root as something cut off or dug up), cognate with Proto-Germanic *burōną (conflated with *bazją) and Latin ferio. A Pre-Greek etymology has been proposed by R. S. P. Beekes.[1]


  • (5th BCE Attic) IPA(key): /pʰá
  • (1st CE Egyptian) IPA(key): /ˈpʰ
  • (4th CE Koine) IPA(key): /ˈɸ
  • (10th CE Byzantine) IPA(key): /ˈ
  • (15th CE Constantinopolitan) IPA(key): /ˈ
  • NounEdit

    φάρμᾰκον (phármakonn (genitive φαρμᾰ́κου); second declension

    1. A drug, whether healing or noxious
    2. A healing drug, medicine, remedy
    3. A potion, charm, spell
    4. A deadly drug, poison
    5. A dye, color


    Derived termsEdit



    1. ^ Beekes, Robert S. P. (2010) Etymological Dictionary of Greek (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 10), with the assistance of Lucien van Beek, Leiden, Boston: Brill, page 1554

    Further readingEdit