archaeo-, archeo-, archae-, arche-, archa-, archi-, -arch

(Greek: original [first in time], beginning, first cause, origin, ancient, primitive, from the beginning; most basic)

archaeon (s), archaea (pl)
Any of a group of microorganisms that resemble bacteria but are different from them in certain aspects of their chemical structure; such as, the composition of their cell walls.

Some scientists believe that archaea were the earliest forms of cellular life. Also called archaebacterium.

archaeophyte
A plant that existed in prehistoric times.
Archaeopteryx
A fossil bird, of the Jurassic period, remarkable for having a long tapering tail of many vertebrae with feathers along each side, and jaws armed with teeth, with other reptilian characteristics.
archaeornis
An extinct primitive toothed bird with a long feathered tail and three free clawed digits on each wing.
Archaeozoic, Archeozoic
1. Living in the earliest geological era.
2. The time from 3,800 million years to 2,500 million years ago; earth's crust formed; unicellular organisms were the earliest forms of life.
3. Formed in the earlier of two divisions of the Precambrian era.
4. Noting or pertaining to the earlier half of the Precambrian Era, from about 5 billion to 2.5 billion years ago, during which the earliest datable rocks were formed and from which the oldest known fossil forms, blue-green algae and bacteria, have been recovered.
archaeozoologist, archeozoologist (s); archaeozoologists, archeozoologists (pl)
Those who study animal bones in order to calculate the minimum numbers of individuals belonging to each animal species found; their size, age, gender, stature, dentition, and whether the bones have any marks from implements implying butchering and eating: "Archaeozoologists analyze the animal remains from different parts of a site in order to understand some of the internal organizations of the settlements, while comparisons between sites within a region may show how different or similar the areas were."
archaeozoology, archeozoology (s) (noun); archaeozoologies, archeozoologies (pl)
The study of animal remains, especially bones, from archaeological contexts: "Archaeozoology involves the identification and analysis of animal species as an aid to reconstructing human diets, determining the impact of animals on past economies, and in understanding the environment at the time the remains were deposited."
archaic (adjective), more archaic, most archaic
1. Marked by the characteristics of a much earlier period; antiquated: There are archaic manners and notions which are no longer acceptable in these modern times.
2. In a linguistic form, commonly used in an earlier time but rare in present-day usage except to suggest the older time, as in religious rituals or historical novels: Examples of archaic language usages include the following: "thou", "wast", "methinks", and "forsooth".
3. Forming the earliest stage; prior to full development: There was an archaic period of psychoanalytic research.

The company had to update its archaic computers because they were incapable of handling all of the data that was being installed into them.

4. A reference to or designating the style of the fine arts: There are some archaic paintings and sculptures that were developed in Greece from the middle of the 7th to the early 5th century B.C., primarily characterized by an increased emphasis on the human figure in action with naturalistic proportions and anatomical structures; there are also simplicity of volumes, forms, or designs, and the evolution of a definitive style for the narrative treatment of subject matters.
5. A term used to describe an early stage in the development of civilization: In New World chronology, an archaic period existed just before the shift from hunting, gathering, and fishing to agricultural cultivation, pottery development, and village settlement.

Between 8000-1000 B.C., there were a series of archaic achievements which characterized certain periods: Early archaic 8000-5000 B.C., mixture of big-game hunting tradition with early archaic cultures; also marked by post-glacial climatic change in association with the disappearance of Late Pleistocene big game animals; then middle archaic cultures from 5000-2000 B.C., and a late archaic period 2000-1000 B.C.

—Compilation of information gleaned from the
Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc.; William Benton, Publisher: Chicago;
1968, Vol.II, Pages 281, 238; and Vol. X, Page 835.
Belonging to a much earlier time.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

archaic Homo sapiens
Relating to or being an early form or subspecies of Homo sapiens, anatomically distinct from modern humans.

Neanderthals in Europe and Solo man in Asia are usually classed as archaic humans. According to one model of human evolution, widely separated but interbreeding archaic groups in different parts of the world evolved independently into today's physiologically distinct geographic populations.

archaic maiolica
A series of jugs and bowls of the early 13th to late 16th centuries in Tuscan and Italian towns.

They were decorated with geometric motifs, leaves, and other forms outlined in brown and set into green or brown backgrounds.

They were sold as far away as Spain, North Africa, and northern Europe. There seems to be a connection to earlier Byzantine and Persian products.

archaically
Referring to something belonging to the distant past; from an ancient period in history; such as, an archaic system of government or an archaic law, rule, or language.
archaism
A word or expression that is not generally used any more.
archaist
Imitatively archaic; affectedly and deliberately antique.
archebiosis
1. The original development or origin of life.
2. The origination of living matter from non-living matter.
3. Spontaneous generation; abiogenesis.
archecentric (adjective)
The original model from which later things are evolved or developed: "Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho is considered to be an archecentric film or the basis for many horror films that were developed later."

Related "time" units: aevum, evum; Calendars; chrono-; horo-; pre-; Quotes: Time; tempo-.