January 15, 2019
circa (preposition)
\SER-kuh\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: in about
How do you use it?
Using a blimp for advertising was so popular circa 1930 that one company had an entire fleet of them.
Are you a word wiz?

In about no time at all, you can take our quiz! Which one of the following words is related in origin to "circa"?

If you chose C, search no longer! "Search" and "circa" both trace to the Latin word "circum," meaning "round about" or "around." "Search" comes from Latin via the Anglo-French "cercher" or "sercher," meaning "to travel about" or "to investigate." The letters "circ" are a clue in searching out other relatives of "circa." Some examples are "circuit," meaning "a boundary around an enclosed space," "circumference," meaning "a line that goes around or encloses a circle," and "circumspect," meaning "careful to consider everything that might happen." In fact, most words in English that begin with "circ" are relatives, even "circus."
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