The term “psychological” comes from the Latin word “psychologicus,” which pertains to the study of the mind or soul. This is derived from the Greek roots “psyche,” meaning “soul” or “mind,” and “logos,” meaning “study” or “discourse.”

1. Proto-Indo-European (PIE)

The PIE root “*bhes-” means “to blow” or “to breathe,” which evolved to signify life or the soul.

2. Greek

From the PIE root, the Greek word “psyche” developed, meaning “soul” or “mind.” The term “psychologia” combines “psyche” (soul) and “logos” (study), meaning “the study of the soul or mind.”

3. Latin

The Greek term “psychologia” was adopted into Latin as “psychologicus,” meaning “pertaining to the study of the mind.”

4. Old French (c. 9th to 14th century CE)

The Latin term “psychologicus” influenced Old French “psychologie,” referring to the study of the mind or soul.

5. Middle English (c. 11th to 15th century CE)

The Old French “psychologie” was adopted into Middle English as “psychologie,” meaning “the study of the mind or soul.”

6. Modern English (from 15th century CE to present)

The term “psychological” evolved into its current form and pronunciation, retaining the meaning of “pertaining to the mind or mental processes.”

Phonetic Evolution

Over time, the pronunciation of “psychological” has remained relatively stable from Middle English to Modern English.

Usage Examples

  • “Psychological is often used to describe anything related to the mind or mental processes.”
  • “Another example of ‘psychological’ in a sentence is ‘She sought psychological help to cope with her anxiety.'”

Cultural or Historical Notes

The development of the word “psychological” was significantly influenced by the rise of modern psychology as a scientific discipline in the 19th century, which emphasized the study of mental processes and behavior.

The word “psychological” reflects the study and understanding of the mind and mental processes, emphasizing the importance of cognitive and emotional aspects in human behavior and well-being.