One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounHistory Of Science
An instrument for measuring or marking off angles consisting of two arms pivoted about a common centre, each with sights, and a protractor or graduated arc against which the arms can be moved.
Early 18th century; earliest use found in Ephraim Chambers (?1680–1740), encyclopaedist. From French récipiangle, apparently from recipi- + French angle.
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