One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Bentham's term for: the branch of science that deals with methods of destroying pests.
Early 19th century; earliest use found in Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832), philosopher, jurist, and reformer. From ancient Greek ϕθισ-, future and aorist stem of ϕθίνειν to decay, perish, used in causal sense, to cause to perish, to destroy + ζῷον animal + -ic: see -ic.
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