This word sounds, perhaps, like a comic-book villainess (succubus, perhaps) who wields ampersands and marries people forcibly. But in truth, the eyes have it. So do the i‘s in this word – you may think there is only one, but the j, in English history (and Latin roots) whilom an i, is really an i-lid in closed position. And the conjunctiva would thus be on its inside. But what is this conjunctiva, famous mostly for the infection to which it is prey (conjunctivitis)? Is it junk, is it a con? No, it’s a juncture, a joining together – the “and” between eyeball and eyelid. The full Latin is membrana conjunctiva, which means our noun was their adjective – but, in the body, a conjunction no less.

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