So the other day, our preacher said many people consider the Bible to be a monograph. I didn’t know what a monograph was, so I put my word nerd skills to work.  What did the prefix and root words mean?

Mono- is from the Greek, and it means "one, alone, single," while graph means "something written, drawn or recorded." The Bible is one writing?  That didn’t help. It has many human authors. (Though it has but one heavenly Author, now that I think of it.)

My next word nerd skill was to think of a similar word. How about "monologue"?

Mono- means "one," and logue comes from logos, meaning "word." John uses logos in John 1 to say "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." That brings chills to my spine whenever I think of it, because it brings a deeper meaning to the concept of the Word of God. However, in no monologue that I’ve ever heard did the speaker say just one word. That didn’t help me get any closer to the definition of "monograph."

So I settled down and listened to the sermon. It was a good one, too, on the first chapter of Acts.

But now I’m getting out Webster’s New World College Dictionary. After giving a historical definition, it says a monograph is "a book or long article, esp. a scholarly one, on a single subject or a limited aspect of a subject."

NOW we’re getting somewhere! The Bible is, indeed, about a single subject. Every book in the Bible points to Jesus in some way, shape, or form.

A monologue is a long speech by one speaker.

Our word "monopoly" comes from mono-  (one) plus polein (to sell). If you have a monopoly, you obviously have the exclusive, singular right to sell your product.

How about "monotone"? mono- (one)+ tone (sound). Just the way I sing–sorry to those who sit near me in church. "Monotone" was a funny word, because "tone" comes to us from the French, who got it from the Latin-speaking Romans, who got it from the Greeks. Those thieving Romans.  If you study their culture, the Romans really didn’t have their own culture. They just renamed the Greek gods and pretended they had their own culture. Greek was even the prevailing language in Roman territory!

I challenge  you to come up with more words using mono-, logue/logos, graph, polein, and tone. Let me know what you come up with; I’d love to hear.

Blessings,
Voni

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