One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Originally Ancient Greek Philosophy. Oral teaching heard only by initiated disciples; esoteric doctrines.
2A rhetorical declamation (as opposed to an argument).
Late 16th century; earliest use found in Thomas North (1535–?1603), translator. From classical Latin acroāma item in an entertainment, and its etymon ancient Greek ἀκρόαμα anything heard (especially with pleasure), piece read, recited, played, or sung from ἀκροᾶσθαι to hear + -μα.
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