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Limitrophe

Definition: Border land; situated on the border, edge, or frontier.

Pronunciation: Lihm-ih-trow-puh


Origin:

The first known use of the word limitrophe was in 1763. It comes to us from the Late Latin word limitrophus meaning “bordering upon, or providing subsistence for frontier troops”. Limitrophus was formed from the Latin word limes for “boundary” and the Greek word trophus for “feeder”.

Why this word?

I used to work with historical maps and still find them quite interesting to look at and study as a hobby. The visual images of historical maps are fascinating in and of themselves but for me the greater appeal lies in the history behind where those boundary lines are drawn and why. Limitrophe piques my interest because of the way in which it references these issues of geographical history. Perhaps by drawing attention to the notion of our borders the history of them will be preserved.

How to use the word limitrophe in a sentence?

“America is limitrophe to both Canada and Mexico.”

“The area limitrophe to the river shall henceforth belong to no man but be a common area for all to enjoy.”

“The limitrophic region between the two countries was in great dispute for many years.”

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Written by Kate Fulton

Kate Fulton has a bachelor’s degree in classics and psychology from the University of Massachusetts and is working on a library science degree from Simmons College. She has always been fascinated by words- their usage, spelling, and etymology. Kate may be one of the few people who enjoyed the verbal section of the SAT. Yes, she is a word geek. Currently she bores her husband and young daughter with her love of vocabulary.

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