auspex

auspex

[aw-speks]
noun, plural auspices [aw-spuh-seez] .
an augur of ancient Rome.

Origin:
1590–1600; < Latin: one who observes birds, soothsayer, diviner, equivalent to au-, base of avis bird + -spex watcher (spec-, stem of specere to look at) + -s nominative singular suffix

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World English Dictionary
auspex (ˈɔːspɛks)
 
n , pl auspices
Roman history another word for augur
 
[C16: from Latin: observer of birds, from avis bird + specere to look]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

auspex
1590s, "one who observes flights of birds for the purpose of taking omens," from L. avispex, from PIE *awi-spek- "observer of birds," from *awi- "bird" + *spek- "to see." Connection between birds and omens also is in Gk. oionos "bird of prey, bird of omen, omen," and ornis "bird," which also could mean
"omen."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Synonyms
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