One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The firstborn child in a family; the eldest child of a monarch considered as heir to the throne. Also in extended use. historical and rare in later use.
Late Middle English; earliest use found in Mirour of Mans Saluacioune. From post-classical Latin primogenitus (adjective and noun) first-born (Vetus Latina, Vulgate), probably from classical Latin prīmus + genitus, past participle of gignere to beget, after Hellenistic Greek πρωτότοκος first-born (Septuagint, New Testament; the post-classical Latin word probably thus shows the connecting vowel -o- rather than the expected -i- after Hellenistic Greek πρωτό- in πρωτότοκος), or perhaps from classical Latin prīmō (adverb) first + genitus.
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