gnomish, adj.
/nohm/, n.
1. (in folklore) one of a species of diminutive beings, usually described as shriveled little old men, that inhabit the interior of the earth and act as guardians of its treasures; troll.
2. an expert in monetary or financial affairs; international banker or financier: the gnomes of Zurich.
[1705-15; < F < NL gnomus, perh. < Gk gnóme; see GNOME2]
Syn. 1. See goblin, sylph.
/nohm, noh"mee/, n.
a short, pithy expression of a general truth; aphorism.
[1570-80; < Gk gnóme judgment, opinion, purpose]

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 in European folklore, dwarfish, subterranean goblin or earth spirit who guards mines of precious treasures hidden in the earth. He is represented in medieval mythologies as a small, physically deformed (usually hunchbacked) creature resembling a dry, gnarled old man. Gob, the king of the gnome race, ruled with a magic sword and is said to have influenced the melancholic temperament of man.

      The term was popularized through works of the 16th-century Swiss alchemist Paracelsus in which gnomes were described as capable of moving through solid earth as fish move through water.

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Universalium. 2010.

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