English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I would go with subpage, but the corrector on stackexchange thinks it's a mistake and shows a red underline. You can try it yourself. Click on "Ask Question" link and type subpage in a sentence to the body textarea.

Why is that? I don't understand. Is subpage a word? Because according to this:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/subpage or http://dictionary.cambridge.org/spellcheck/british/?q=subpage or http://thesaurus.com/browse/subpage?s=t

It's not even a word! I don't understand it at all. I and millions are using this term everyday.
Could somebody, please, explain that to me?

Btw. Microsoft is using "subpage" word for Office products instead of "sub page": http://office.microsoft.com/en-in/onenote-help/about-pages-and-subpages-HP001112525.aspx

share|improve this question
It's a word en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subpage but not yet in the dictionaries – mplungjan Mar 25 '13 at 9:24
Please, explain the downvote, thank you. – Derfder Mar 25 '13 at 16:50
I did not downvote. – mplungjan Mar 25 '13 at 17:14
up vote 2 down vote accepted

A prefix is defined as :

A prefix (affix) is a word, or letter(s) placed at the beginning of another word (a base word) to adjust or qualify its usage or meaning. The opposite of prefix is suffix.

And sub as a prefix is defined:

sub-: 1. a prefix, occurring orig. in loanwords from Latin, with the meanings “under,” “below,” “beneath” (subsoil; subway), “just outside of,” “near” (subalpine; subtropical), “less than,” “not quite” (subhuman; suboscine; subteen), “secondary,” “at a lower point in a hierarchy” (subcommittee; subplot).

So, until we have 'sub page' entered into the dictionaries, I think it would be a good idea to interpret it like (we do) the words with prefixes.

share|improve this answer
The question is not 'If it is allowable what does it mean?' One can't add a prefix to an arbitrarily chosen word and guarantee to end up with another word (in spite of some people's desire for an extremely flexible meaning for 'word'). Perhaps we might produce a - subword. – Edwin Ashworth Mar 25 '13 at 18:27
With the advent of the web, "page" took on new and different meanings. Prior to that, a page (of text, that is) was always a single sheet of paper. Now a page can be dynamic, and therefore a subpage has meaning -- but it has not had such meaning for long, so it can be considered a new word not yet found in dictionaries, and certainly not in automated word checkers. – shipr Mar 25 '13 at 19:07
"subpage" is much older (early 90's) than "I will google it." merriam-webster.com/dictionary/google, (max. 2003 or 2004) which is only a couple years, therefore I don't understand why it is still not in the dictionaries. Oh, I might have an idea... like money and contacts on the right places as usual :) – Derfder Mar 25 '13 at 19:37

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.