A pagan is someone who holds religious beliefs other than the main world religions.

Propaganda is misleading information.

Pagans could be ostracized for holding different beliefs and being labelled as "misinformants".

Also, where did the "da" ending come from?

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    Please include the research you’ve done, or consider if your question suits our English Language Learners site better. Questions that can be answered using commonly-available references are off-topic. – Hot Licks Apr 30 '19 at 11:59
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    They both originally stem from the same Indo-European root pehǵ-, but they go through words with radically different meanings in Latin (propago and pagus). – Peter Shor Apr 30 '19 at 12:05
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    Rather ironic that propaganda should be thought of as related to pagan. See Etymonline, which is a hugely useful resource for this sort of question. – Andrew Leach Apr 30 '19 at 12:08
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    @AndrewLeach One parse of 'propaganda' is as pro-pagan-da. It's right there in the middle. – Mitch Apr 30 '19 at 14:48
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    That is NOT a good definition of paganism. Paganism tends to have multiple gods which basically deify the forces of nature. So there can be non-mainstream religions – jamesqf Apr 30 '19 at 16:24



from Late Latin paganus "pagan," in classical Latin "villager, rustic; civilian, non-combatant" noun use of adjective meaning "of the country, of a village,"

Online Etymological Dictionary

Middle English, from Late Latin pāgānus, from Latin, country-dweller, civilian, from pāgus, country, rural district; see pag- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.

American Heritage Dictionary


"committee of cardinals in charge of Catholic missionary work," short for Congregatio de Propaganda Fide "congregation for propagating the faith," a committee of cardinals established 1622 by Gregory XV to supervise foreign missions.

Online Etymological Dictionary

from Latin prōpāgandā, ablative feminine gerundive of prōpāgāre, to propagate; see PROPAGATE.

American Heritage Dictionary

But also yes.

Ultimately both from Proto-Indo European pag-:

pagan, peasant, from Latin pāgus, "boundary staked out on the ground," district, village, country;

propagate, from Latin prōpāgāre, to propagate (< "to fix before"; prō‑, before, in front; see per1);

The American Heritage Dictionary Indo-European Roots

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    But both originally come from the same Indo-European root *pehǵ- – Peter Shor Apr 30 '19 at 12:08
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    God, I had always thought propago "propagate" was directly from pagus "village", as in "spread a message throughout the countryside, going from village to village", but that is wrong. It is indeed as you say: the etymologies only come together in Proto-Indo-European (or possibly some other pre-Latin phase). – Cerberus_Reinstate_Monica Apr 30 '19 at 13:10
  • Comments about referencing have been moved to chat. – Andrew Leach Apr 30 '19 at 20:54

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