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1. The act of stretching and yawning.
2. A full body stretch.
3. Yawning; the involuntary stretching motions associated with yawning.

Getting better acquainted with a common human and animal activity

Feeling bored? Tired? Did you just wake up? So, what usually happens? You pandiculate! In other words you stretch yourself and let out a loud yawn. People no doubt have seen their dogs and cats pandiculate, too.

4. Etymology: English incorporated pandiculate from the French, who inherited it from Latin pandiculari, "to stretch oneself" which came from pandere "to spread, to unfold".

The past participle of pandere is passus, a root resulting in the word "passage", something which also stretches. The "leaves" of plants also stretch out as they grow, so the Greeks based their word for "leaf", petalos, on this same root. English borrowed the Greek word to form the word "petal".

In the Germanic languages, the same original root became fathmaz, "the length of two arms stretched out", which English inherited as "fathom", a measurement of length that is about six feet.

This entry is located in the following unit: pand-, pans-, pass- (page 2)