August 29, 2013
apparatus (noun)
\ap-uh-RAT-us\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
1 : the equipment or material for a particular use or job2 : a complicated instrument or device
How do you use it?
Tim's favorite apparatus in gymnastics is the men's high bar.
Are you a word wiz?

Which word do you think comes from the same origin as "apparatus"?

"Apparatus" and "prepare" both trace to the Latin root "parare," meaning "to prepare." When "apparatus" first entered English in the 17th century, it was used to refer to the work of preparing for something. That meaning eventually dropped out of use while the senses we use today developed. Some other members of the "parare" family have something to do with preparing. For example, a "parapet" is a wall of earth or stone to protect soldiers and "rampart" is a broad bank or wall raised as a protective barrier, both in preparation for attack. "Repair" is another member of the "parare" family. When you "repair" something, you prepare it for use.
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