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denoting a period of mountain building in Europe in the late Palaeozoic

1580s, designating the forest-covered mountains of ancient Germany, from Latin Hercynia (silva) “Hercynian (forest),” related to Greek Orkynios drymos, probably from Old Celtic *Perkunya, from PIE *perq(o)- “oak, oak forest, wooded mountain” (see fir).


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