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[aw-speks] /ˈɔ spɛks/
noun, plural auspices
[aw-spuh-seez] /ˈɔ spəˌsiz/ (Show IPA)
an augur of ancient Rome.
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 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for auspex


noun (pl) auspices (ˈɔːspɪˌsiːz)
(Roman history) another word for augur (sense 1)
Word Origin
C16: from Latin: observer of birds, from avis bird + specere to look
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for 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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