Is there a special name to call words like Judeo-Christian, following the construction Xo-Y?

(Same question for French)


In general, this kind of word is called a compound. Wikipedia says:

Compounding or Word-compounding refers to the faculty and device of language to form new words by combining or putting together old words. In other words, compound, compounding or word-compounding occurs when a person attaches two or more words together to make them one word. The meanings of the words interrelate in such a way that a new meaning comes out which is very different from the meanings of the words in isolation.

The specific construction in your example (and in your French examples as well) takes a combining form Xo (Judeo is the combining form of Jewish) and compounds it with a noun Y.

This is an example of a specific type of compound known as a classical compound.

  • Is there a specific term if it's more than just a compound? If it's also a modifier, eg semi-precious
    – mgb
    Dec 19 '11 at 4:43
  • @MartinBeckett I expanded my answer as I peeked at the OP's French question and saw that they were all of this specific form.
    – Gnawme
    Dec 19 '11 at 5:00
  • "This is an example of a specific type of compound known as a classical compound". Does that imply classical compound is not limited to the Xo-Y pattern?
    – Kris
    Dec 19 '11 at 10:01
  • @Kris Yes; read the reference I linked.
    – Gnawme
    Dec 19 '11 at 17:21

I know this is an old question, but I'm surprised no-one mentioned "hyphenated". The construction described in the OP is a hyphenated compound word.

  • The question asks for a "special name" for words "following the construction Xo-Y". "Hyphenated compound word" is a hypernym of "classical compound", a term that takes in combinations where a vowel "facilitates the combination", like "the Greek thematic vowel -o-" or "the Latin thematic -i-". That is, both terms are correct but "classical compound" is more specific than "hyphenated compound". Jul 26 '12 at 17:02
  • Thank you. I missed the nuance of the "o" in "Xo-Y". I learned something!
    – TecBrat
    Jul 27 '12 at 13:26

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