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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 14014  
Subject: exorbitant Date: 11/19/2012 12:26 PM
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I was writing something and instinctively spelled 'exorbitant' with an h (exhorbitant <cringe>). Like "exhort." Luckily, I checked before sending and discovered my mistake. I consider myself a very good, but imperfect, speller, and I wanted to get to the bottom of my mistake.

exorbitant (adj.)
mid-15c., a legal term, "deviating from rule or principle, eccentric;" from L. exorbitantem (nom. exorbitans), prp. of exorbitare "deviate, go out of the track," from ex- "out of" (see ex-) + orbita "wheel track" (see orb). Sense of "excessive, immoderate" is from 1620s; of prices, rates, etc., from 1660s.

Aha--out of the orb, I can remember that!

Not to be confused with the h-containing "exhort":

exhortation (n.)
late 14c., from O.Fr. exhortacion and directly from L. exhortationem (nom. exhortatio) "an exhortation, encouragement," noun of action from pp. stem of exhortari, from ex- "thoroughly" (see ex-) + hortari "encourage, urge" (see hortatory).

=alstro, grateful to my 8th grade English teacher, who turned me on to etymology. We were each assigned a word to investigate, and I was lucky enough to find a fanciful explanation of 'falsehood' (something about impersonating a practitioner of a false Medieval occupation by donning a "false hood"!).
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