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Etymology of Serendipity

I've just been asked what the Latin or Greek root of "serendipity" was. I didn't know, thankfully. Its root, according to the OED is essentially the old name for Sri Lanka, "Serendip"

A word coined by Horace Walpole, who says (Let. to Mann, 28 Jan. 1754) that he had formed it upon the title of the fairy-tale "The Three Princes of Serendip", the heroes of which "were always making discoveries, by accidents and sagacity, of things they were not in quest of".]
It was a happy fortuitous discovery for me.


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