I wonder how many people just stop reading when they see a phrase like “fun English fact”? Well, anyway.
You know the words “genus” and “species” from biology, right? In Homo sapiens, Homo is the genus and sapiens is the species. A species is a very particular type of organism, while a genus is a broader category that the species belongs to.
In fact, you might say that a species is very specific, and a genus is more generic.
Whoa. Did I just blow your mind?
Yes, in fact, “species” and “specific” both come from the Latin word “species,” meaning a particular type or sort, while “genus” and “generic” both come from the Latin word “genus,” meaning race, kind, or family. The genus/generic connection becomes even clearer when you realize that the plural of “genus” is “genera.”
Mad props to the Online Etymology Dictionary for enabling today’s post. Also, I want to apologize for using “etymology” and “mad props” in the same sentence. Actually, wait, no I don’t. I regret nothing.
Today’s knowledge bomb is officially dropped. Carry on.