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This article represents a larger project that seeks to understand the function and implications of the use of etymologies in the writing of history in the Middle Ages. I examine the strategy of historians to etymologize within the framework of grammatical theories and historiographic methods of Latin scholarship. I conclude that, contrary to the traditional view that medieval etymologies are literary tropes and wordplay in all contexts, medieval historians used etymology as an epistemologicaldoi:10.13130/interfaces-06-03 fatcat:clentp6mzfd6fmm5wqcfas3pje