One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An oral discourse; a discourse listened to rather than read.
Early 17th century; earliest use found in William Lisle (c1569–1637), translator and Anglo-Saxon scholar. From classical Latin acroāsis public lecture, and its etymon ancient Greek ἀκρόασις action of hearing, something listened to, recitation, lecture from ἀκροᾶσθαι to listen, to listen to (from ἄκρος topmost + οὖς ear, the sense being ‘to prick the ears, listen carefully’) + -σις.
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