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23
votes
3answers
17k views

What’s the rule for adding “-er” vs. “-or” when nouning a verb?

What’s the rule to decide whether you add -er or whether you add -or when creating a noun from a verb? Sometimes it’s -er: read > reader hate > hater hit > hitter But other times it’s -or: ...
12
votes
3answers
291 views

Term for words like Snowmageddon, Nipplegate and even cheeseburger?

Is there a term for words like Snowmageddon, Nipplegate and even cheeseburger? I know they're portmanteaus (or portmanteaux), but they seem to belong to a special class of portmanteau. In the title ...
8
votes
14answers
55k views

What is the adjective form for the word “integrity?”

I'm looking for the adjective form of "integrity." Instead of "Be a person of integrity," I'd like to say something like "Be [one word I'm looking for]" I did a Google search for this, but I also ...
6
votes
5answers
510 views

Adjective for something that can be responded to

What is an adjective for something that can be responded to? I tried respondable but it looks like it isn't in the dictionary and it felt wrong anyway. Update: I need to use it in the context of ...
2
votes
2answers
863 views

Can we determine a proper verb form of “exegesis” for Biblical scholars to use?

This is related to a conversation here in EL&U SE. Apparently the noun exegete is being used as verb in religious circles. For Biblical Scholars, the word exegesis carries with it a connotation ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Where does the term “hardware” in computer science comes from?

The term Software was coined in 195x. And it was opposed the term Hardware, physical part of a computer system, which is tangible. But where does the term Hardware comes from (from which of the ...
1
vote
1answer
219 views

Derivations of operation, operable vs. reparation, reparable

After a little thought I decided irreparable derives from repairable, but a few seconds later, decided it stems from reparation, "like operable from operation". Looking the words up, I found I was ...
1
vote
1answer
149 views

What is the proper adjective form, if any, of apothecary?

What is the proper adjective form, if any, of apothecary? My best guess is 'apothecal', although my resources have not found a definitive answer one way or the other. For example: Jordan ...
1
vote
3answers
278 views

What’s the etymology of “beholden”?

I know the word behold means to look upon. So why does beholden mean obligated, indebted? Can someone tell me how this phrase came about?
0
votes
3answers
210 views

Is it right or wrong to use forms of words that aren't in any dictionaries? [closed]

I want to use the word ataractically in a formal piece of writing. A derived form of ataraxia, I'd like to use it in a sentence like this: This is the most ataractically candid thing I've ever ...