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Pre­gun­ta and Count

Pre­gun­ta (Span­ish for “ques­tion”) comes from the Latin per- (“through”) and con­tus (“pole”).

From the Latin root con­tus, we al­so get the Eng­lish… count. But how do we get from “pole” to “count­ing”? Well, re­mem­ber the Ro­man style of count­ing that you prob­a­bly learned in el­e­men­tary school, or at least I did back in the day — make a lit­tle pole on the pa­per for each num­ber, and when you hit the fifth one, cross it through; then re­peat — and we then re­mem­ber that count­ing is re­al­ly just lin­ing up sticks to rep­re­sent the to­tal num­bers!

We can see that the g‑n-t of pre­gun­ta maps to the c‑n-t of count.

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