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In a message dated 7/28/00 2:33:31 PM Pacific Daylight Time, 
dannj@alphalink.com.au writes:

> Or more literally "to sieze and carry off". Hence the painting "the rape
>  of the Sabines", which shows a couple of guys slinging a pair of women
>  over their horses. The word rape originally meant to abduct someone, and
>  is no doubt derived from a similar word as "raptor". I wonder if the
>  word "rapture" is of similar origin (since it involves being carried
>  somewhere).

Rapio, v., 1st pers. sg. "I snatch to myself, seize and carry off, seize 
hastily; I lead away with haste, hurry away, hurry off; I tear, pluck, drag; 
I snatch away, carry off; I rob, ravish, plunder, ravage, carry off as 
plunder; I lay waste; I carry away, lead astray, transport, draw 
irresistibly; I seize by violence, steal" (>Eng. rape, ravage, ravish).

Present infinitive: rapere "to snatch to oneself", etc.
1st pers. sg. perfect: rapui "I snatched/have snatched to myself", etc.
Perfect passive participle: raptus, -a, -um "snatched to oneself, seized and 
carried     off", etc. (>Eng. rapt, rapture, [sur]rept[itious])

(<Proto-Indo-European root rep- [actually more likely reph-], "to seize, 


raptum, n., neut. "plunder, booty"
rapax, adj. "grasping, rapacious; prone to grasp; greedy" (>Eng. rapacious)
rapidus, -a, -um, adj. "snatching, seizing; consuming; impetuous, rapid" 
(>Eng.      rapid)
rapina, n., fem. "robbery, plundering; prey, booty" (>Eng. ravenous)
raptim, adv. "hastily, hurriedly"
raptio, n., fem. "seizing, abduction"
rapto, v., 1st pers. sg. "I carry away, hurry away, drag along; I rob, 
raptor, n., masc. "robber, plunderer; abductor" (>Eng. raptor)
raptus, n., masc. "abduction, rape; rending, tearing off; plunder"

So there you go.

Nick P.