Who Knew?

So, in my latest ten minute play, I am referencing a type of fortune telling that uses figs. Yes, figs. It’s called sycomancy and I was wondering what the preface “syc” meant since “sychophant” seemed to have nothing to do with figs. Goes to show you what I know:

sycophant 1537 (in L. form sycophanta), “informer, talebearer, slanderer,” from L. sycophanta, from Gk. sykophantes, originally “one who shows the fig,” from sykon “fig” + phanein “to show.” “Showing the fig” was a vulgar gesture made by sticking the thumb between two fingers, a display which vaguely resembles a fig, itself symbolic of a cunt (sykon also meant “vulva”). The story goes that prominent politicians in ancient Greece held aloof from such inflammatory gestures, but privately urged their followers to taunt their opponents. The sense of “mean, servile flatterer” is first recorded in Eng. 1575. Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2001 Douglas Harper [From sycophant – Definitions from Dictionary.com]

On this day..