Etymology of Palimpsest
The other day I came across the etymology of Palimpsest:
πάλιν — again
ψάω — to rub smooth
I thought this was pretty interesting and, of course, makes sense.
The OED provides a more detailed etymology, demonstrating the rich history of the term:
Etymology: < classical Latin palimpsēstus paper or parchment which has been written on again < Hellenistic Greek παλίμψηστος scraped again, also παλίμψηστον a parchment from which writing has been erased < ancient Greek πάλιν again (see palinodia n.) + -ψηστός < ψῆν to rub smooth ( < the same Indo-European base as Sanskrit bhas- , psā- to crush, chew, devour) + epenthetic -σ- + -τός , suffix forming verbal adjectives. Compare Middle French, French palimpseste (1542 as noun, 1573 as adjective, both in isolated attestations; subsequently in spec. palaeographical sense from 1813 as noun, from 1817 as adjective), Italian palinsesto , (now rare) palimpsesto (in isolated attestations 16th–17th cent., and 1611 in Florio as †palimsesto ; subsequently in spec. palaeographical sense from the early 19th cent.).
Palimpsest can also be used as a verb.