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lituus

[ lit-yoo-uhs ]
/ ˈlɪt yu əs /
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noun, plural lit·u·i [lit-yoo-ahy]. /ˈlɪt yuˌaɪ/.

Geometry. a polar curve generated by the locus of a point moving so that the square of its radius vector varies inversely as the angle the radius vector makes with the polar axis. Equation: θr2 = a.
(in ancient Rome) a crook-shaped staff used by augurs for divination.

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Origin of lituus

1605–15; <Latin; geometrical sense from the curve's resemblance to such a staff
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

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