That's a Yoke, Son
In Greek, the word that described oxen yoked together was also used to describe wedded union. (We’re in this for the long haul, Elsie!) The core was συζυγ-- (syzyg-), and it has given us some strange words.
• Syzygiology is the study of the relationship, the intertwining, of parts and functions, as contrasted to the study of isolated parts and functions.
• Syzygy refers to various pairings: heavenly bodies, cranial nerves, sutured joints, two organisms that retain separate identities, rational integral functions, Gnostic oppositions, and a microorganism supposedly formed by the fusion of several larval parasites.
• Syzegetic is the adjective form for the syzygy meaning a group of rational integral functions so related that, on their being severally multiplied by other rational integral functions, the sum of the products vanishes identically.
• Syzygial is an adjective form used for the astronomical and zoological meanings of syzygy.
• Syzygium is the conjunction of two organisms without loss of identity, as in the genus Diplozoon (parasitic worms).
• Antisyzygy is a union of opposites. Here’s an example from F. Hale, Reader, 24 January, 1863: “Zoroastrianism . . . fuses together—in what Clement of Rome would have denominated an antisyzygy—the Deity and Satan.”
SIDEBAR: Syzygy — the progressive rock band
Now available from McFarland & Co.: Word Parts Dictionary, 2nd edition
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