comb. form (before a vowel, cyt-
), from Mod.L., from Gk. kytos
"a hollow, receptacle, basket" (from PIE *ku-ti-
, from base *(s)keu-
"to cover, conceal;" see hide
(n.1)); used in modern science since c.1859 for "cell," perhaps especially from the sense (in Aristophanes) of "a cell of a hive of wasps or bees."