A prefix is an affix which is placed before the stem of a word

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When to use under and over as prefixes rather than adverbs with past participles

Is there a rule on when under and over are used as prefixes rather than adverbs when attached to past participles (and whether or not they are hyphenated)? In general, it seems that both words are ...
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3answers
5k views

“Not able to” vs. “unable to”

Which phrase is more suitable to convey one's inability to do something — "not able to" or "unable to"? For example, not able to join the meeting unable to join the meeting
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1answer
37 views

untypical, atypical, nontypical

I'm trying to label customer data with a word describing how typical they are. There is basically 3 possible values: typical, temporarily untypical, untypical. But I'm not sure if "untypical" is the ...
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5answers
3k views

“Irregardless” vs. “irrespective”

Why is irrespective considered a proper word but irregardless is not?
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2answers
106 views

How would you suffix a phrasal verb being used as a noun? [closed]

You may be aware that people often informally suffix a word with '-a-saurus rex' to add emphasis, e.g. 'You Sir, are a douche-a-saurus rex.' I've just been thinking about what the correct orthography ...
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4answers
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Pronunciation of en- prefix as ahn-

Recently, I pronounced the word enqueue as ahn-queue. The person I was talking to said he would have pronounced it with a more normal en sound (like in Ben or den). I'm not sure why I thought that ...
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5answers
4k views

What is the antonym of the prefix retro-?

A coworker and I are discussing the word "retromingent", which means urinating backwards. We are wondering what the opposite would be: the word that means urinating forwards. What is the opposite of ...
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2answers
7k views

Why does “unisex” mean both sexes?

There are some places where men and women are segregated — for example public toilets and public swimming pool changing areas. By this I mean, for example, that there are "Men's toilets" and "Ladies' ...
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0answers
39 views

Mashing parts together to form Philanthropomath [closed]

I've always been unskilled with prefixes, suffixes, roots, etc. I was wondering if I combined philanthrope(ic) and philomath to form Philanthropomath Does this turn into nonsense? Or through the ...
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0answers
54 views

prevent (doing something before it happens) and doing something after it happend [closed]

When you prevent something, you take action for an event not to happen - before it happens. What is a familiar word you would use to indicate action to take after the event happened? Like ...
16
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7answers
14k views

“Biweekly”, “bimonthly”, “biannual”, and “bicentennial”

What do lengths of time with the "bi" prefix mean"? I have understood bicentennial as once every two hundred years, but biannual as meaning twice a year. Do biweekly and bimonthly mean twice a week or ...
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2answers
500 views

“dis” and “un” prefixes for the word interest

For the word interest we can say: I am disinterested* in that topic. And it is correct. To be correct again we must use the prefix "un" if we choose to structure the sentence this way: That ...
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3answers
8k views

Meaning of the “rupt” suffix/prefix

I was wondering the other day about the word corrupt, found that the suffix "rupt" appears in many words and as a prefix for another set and decided to ask this question: What does "rupt" mean? ...
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1answer
87 views

Signature for Doctor of Information Technology prefix and suffix [closed]

How can I sign my name with the degree of "Doctor of Information Technology" Is this all correct Dr.Full Name Full Name D.I.T Dr Full Name (Doctor of Information Technology) Dr.Last Name Can I ...
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1answer
1k views

Opposite of 'for-' prefix

I understand that often the opposite of the 'for-' prefix is 'back-', ie. "forwards" and "backwards," "foreground" and "background." But what is the opposite of 'foreshadowing,' 'forgiven' or ...
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1answer
366 views

How to hyphenate a negated compound noun?

We have a term for a process, "defect source assessment". We want to describe a set of processes that are not related to that process. Which of the following (if any) would be correct? non ...
1
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1answer
45 views

meaning of Republic [closed]

I've been thinking what might be the real meaning of the word Republic? As far as I know the prefix re- gives the base word the meaning of again; as in renew, replace, reclaim. I am wondering what ...
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2answers
190 views

Is it ok to use Er. if a person is engineering degree holder

Its usual that we see doctors use Dr. Title, but I have also seen engineers use title - Er. Is this practise allowed, approved? I have seen few name boards like that in India.
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16answers
4k views

A word that means 'most important'?

I tried to find a single word that means "most important", but I couldn't. I want it to be able to express what's missing below: If you get hurt, the _ thing to do is to stay calm. It would ...
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4answers
4k views

“Undistinguishable” vs. “indistinguishable”

Is there a difference between these two words? To me, it seems that undistinguishable is more where you can't tell what it is, and indistinguishable seems to be where they're the same. It seems a lot ...
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6answers
2k views

Do “asymmetric” and “dissymmetric” have different meaning?

I get that usually a- (or un-) and di- prefixes mean different things, e.g. uninterested and disinterested. However, both asymmetric and dissymmetric refer to the lack of symmetry (which the NOAD ...
3
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1answer
93 views

Origin and usage of “nu-” (e.g. nu-metal)

Not every dictionary I checked has "nu-" but here are a few examples: nu- dictionary.com — indicating an updated or modern version of something: nu-metal music Bing — new: ...
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11answers
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What is a good replacement for “ununderstandable”?

I want to tell a colleague of mine I'm doing something that will prevent her from getting "ununderstandable" errors. I have: ...so that you will not get unnecessary, [ununderstandable] errors. ...
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2answers
385 views

prefix for “possible”, “supposed”, “potential” etc.?

I am looking for a prefix to express the meaning of something possibly belonging to a class / category, or being a candidate for the concept in question. For instance, a "[...]-solution" would be ...
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4answers
9k views

“Uncapable” or “incapable”?

In Microsoft Word, uncapable is marked as wrong. It sounded pretty alright to me, thus, I checked it up on the Web and found that many dictionaries do not have "uncapable" in their entries, but ...
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3answers
294 views

How to form this tag question?

We always use a positive tag question after a negative sentence: You shouldn't take this medicine, should you? We use a negative tag question after a positive sentence: She must leave early, ...
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1answer
7k views

Why “unequal” but “inequality”?

The opposite of "equal" is "unequal", yet there is no word "unequality". Why do we use "inequality" instead?
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10answers
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“Unregister” vs “Deregister”

The concept of "undoing a registration" is widely used in my line of work. While most dictionaries define unregister as the proper verb for it, several widely used and highly considered sources also ...
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2answers
198 views

Is there a gender-neutral prefix for “parent”?

The prefixes "patr-" and "matr-" refer, respectively, to father and mother--e.g., a patriarch is a father who rules a family, and a matrilineal society is one where property is passed from mother to ...
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1answer
70 views

confusion about the 'ch' sound [duplicate]

i am confused about using the "ch" as there are three sound starting with "ch" as-/k/sound, and like these. is there some important rules to find out word formation?.someone please help me.
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3answers
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Why does “quadratic” describe second power while “quad” usually describes “four”?

In mathematics, quadratic means "involving the second and no higher power of an unknown quantity or variable". But the prefix quad- usually describes something that has to do with four, such as ...
4
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1answer
148 views

Pronunciation of the prefix “tri”

I know that English pronunciation is rather arbitrary. There are still some "rules" that even with many exceptions are useful for non-natives like me. I'm puzzled about the pronunciation of the very ...
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2answers
194 views

Should there be a hyphen in 're-rate'?

If you have already rated something and then you want to rate it again, what is the correct term? Rerate or Re-rate?
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2answers
413 views

Is there any dictionary that decomposes an English word into prefix, root, and suffix?

Is there any dictionary that shows the decomposition of each word into these three parts, if application at all? For instance, "incapable" is divided into prefix "in", root "cap", and suffix "able". ...
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0answers
147 views

How meanings of “dis” and “play” construct the meaning of word “display” [closed]

In what way do meanings of "dis" and "play" construct the meaning of word "display"? As I understand it, the prefix "dis" negates what follows e.g., disability, and disadvantage. But I can't quite ...
3
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1answer
768 views

Difference between the terms 'famous' & 'infamous'; 'valuable' & 'invaluable'

Question in Short: Why is it that the terms valuable and invaluable mean almost the same thing while the terms famous and infamous are almost semantically opposite in meaning? That is, one is used to ...
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2answers
209 views

How do I address an envelope where one person has a professional title but their spouse does not?

When addressing an envelope to Dr John Smith and his wife, Jane Smith, what would be the proper form to utilize? I have been using "Dr. and Mrs. John and Jane Smith", but I was told by my co-worker ...
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2answers
103 views

Inconsecutive or nonconsecutive or …? [closed]

I want to say that the data is not like 154, 155, 156, 157, 158, 159 but can be 154, 156, 157, 159. How do I negate the word "consecutive"? I was not able to find it in the dictionary. I have found ...
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0answers
59 views

Why doesn't the prefix 'in-' mean the same in “invaluable” and “infamous” as it does in “insufficient” and “incompetent”? [duplicate]

Looking at a Prefix/Suffix chart confirms that the prefix "in-" is supposed to mean 'not' or 'without', just wondering why the exception only occurs for certain words. I don't know if it's an origin ...
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4answers
775 views

Is there a prefix for “infinite”?

I was looking for a prefix I could prepend to a word to mean an infinite amount of the thing the word describes. I eventually found someone with the same question, and since there were no answers, I ...
29
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3answers
3k views

Why are not “infamous” and “inflammable” the opposite of “famous” and “flammable”?

Why are not infamous and inflammable the opposite of famous and flammable, like incomplete, inactivity, inappropriate and so on?
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3answers
765 views

Change of form of some (Latin) prefixes like ex-, ad- into ef-, a-: are there rules or conditions?

There are many cases of prefixes changing their forms. For example ex- can change to ef- in front of f, e.g. effusion. ad- becomes a- in front of b, e.g. abate. Are there some more general rules ...
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4answers
2k views

How productive is the prefix “un-”?

Is it possible to use un- with new words such as sit, sleep, sad? I'm currently seeing many words (in programming) which use "un-" in the meaning of undoing something. For example, is it possible to ...
18
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3answers
2k views

Is there a general rule for the prefixation of “un-” and “de-” to words?

Given the different questions we have seen about the prefixes "de-" and "un-", I have grown curious if there is a overarching rule for terms that need undoing. “Unselect” or “Deselect”? “Unregister” ...
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2answers
220 views

How can you omit repetition of words with prefixes, e.g. “inputs and outputs”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Use of hyphens when writing repeated compound words that has common parts I am looking for a general way of shortening the repetition of words with prefixes like ...
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4answers
33k views

“Unselect” or “Deselect”?

If I want the user to revert their operation of selecting an item, should I say: "Unselect the option" or "Deselect the option"?
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5answers
2k views

What prefix means “during”?

The prefixes "pre-" and "post-" refer to events before and after. For instance, "pre-season" and "post-season" or "pre-study" and "post-study". Is there a prefix fitting this pattern which means ...
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4answers
3k views

Isn't the word “uninstall” wrong?

I've never understood this. Why is the proper usage "uninstall"? You can't actually "unin" something at all and this isn't that case with most (all?) other use cases. Examples: You make someone ...
47
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5answers
5k views

What we've gelost — why doesn't English use the prefix “ge-”?

The Germanic languages that I'm familiar with all use a prefix similar to ge- on past participles: German: Ich habe mir den Fuß gebrochen. Dutch: Ik heb mijn voet gebroken. But English ...
2
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2answers
165 views

Meaningless s- and f-?

I saw some words on etymonline, started with s-, which seems meaningless For example, slack actually means "lax". There are also other words, if you delete the starting letter s or f, they are still ...