One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Biology. The capacity for successful adaptation to changes in environmental conditions; (also) a character that can alter, or that has altered, as a result of such adaptation. rare (now disused).
2A philosophy or ideology based on the application of ecological concepts and priorities to political and moral issues.
Early 20th century; earliest use found in The Botanical Gazette. From ecology + -ism.
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