1. Of or characteristic of the countryside or its people; rustic. See Synonyms at rural.
2. Of or characteristic of shepherds or flocks; pastoral.
1. A pastoral poem.
2. A farmer or shepherd; a rustic.
[Latin būcolicus, pastoral, from Greek boukolikos, from boukolos, cowherd : bous, cow; see gwou- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots + -kolos, herdsman; see kwel-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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.