A medieval name for China popularized by Marco Polo in accounts of his travels. It usually applied only to the area north of the Yangtze River.
[Medieval Latin Cataya, Cathaya, ultimately (via Turkic languages) from Khitan Khitai, the Khitan people (who ruled in northern China and Central Asia in an era of increasing interaction between China, the Muslim world, and Europe).]
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Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.