Veteran versus Veterinary

While driving in to work this morning, Raelyn pointed out that we were passing “Lucy’s doctor”.

Lucy is our dog and her doctor is, predictably, a veterinarian.

For whatever reason my mind leapt to the word “veteran” which sounds like it has a similar base but has nothing to do with prescribing feline antibiotics.

So here are the fruits of my non-laborious search on the confluence of Veteran versus Veterinary:


Etymology: Latin veteranus, from veteranus, adjective, old, of long experience, from veter-, vetus old


Etymology: Latin veterinarius of beasts of burden, from veterinae beasts of burden, from feminine plural of veterinus of beasts of burden; akin to Latin veter-, vetus old

So they’re both Latin and they share a common base, “old”, but it’s unclear (to me) as to why.

Maybe soldiers, especially old soldiers, are like beasts of burden. Makes some kind of sense to me.

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