One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Forming nouns adopted unchanged from Latin (such as alluvium) or based on Latin or Greek words (such as euphonium)
2Forming names of metallic elements.‘cadmium’‘magnesium’
3Denoting a region of the body.‘pericardium’
4Denoting a biological structure.‘mycelium’
Modern Latin in -ium (sense 2, -ium sense 3, -ium sense 4), via Latin from Greek -ion.
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