A succinct formulation of a fundamental principle, general truth, or rule of conduct. See Synonyms at saying.
[Middle English maxime, from Old French, from Medieval Latin maxima, from maxima (prōpositiō), greatest (premise), feminine of Latin maximus, greatest; see meg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
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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.