I was doing some writing today, and during the final editing process I came across a typo: I had misspelled "absent" as "abscent". I couldn't help but think of the word abscond. I wonder if it's true that the only etymological relation "absent" and "abscond" share is the latin ab(s)- (And I guess my bigger question is whether or not that is even the case)? Any insight would be welcome, even if this is kind of a silly question. Thanks!

closed as general reference by MetaEd, Kris, Andrew Leach, aedia λ, FumbleFingers Jun 5 '13 at 18:41

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.


The online Oxford Dictionary gives no connection between these two words (absent / abscond) other than the Latin ab(s)- meaning 'away, from'. The origin of absent is abesse (-esse = 'to be'), while the origin of abscond is abscondere (-condere = 'stow').

So we have:

absent = be away/from

abscond = stow (or hide) away/from

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