As a matter of fact, I don't know whether there is any difference between the source words in bold below:

From Latin ingeniosus (“endowed with good natural capacity, gifted with genius”), from ingenium (“innate or natural quality, natural capacity, genius”), from in (“in”) + gignere (“to produce”), Old Latin genere. Compare French ingénieux; see also engine.

From Latin ingenuus ("of noble character, frank")

And I wanna know the help of discerning the Modern meanings of those two words with the grammatical suffixes in Old Latin or Greek above.

closed as general reference by Mitch, FumbleFingers, MetaEd, user11550, Matt E. Эллен Aug 28 '12 at 9:47

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 account by Daily Writing Tips that Roaring Fish presents is correct for the recent history. But it stops about 2000 years ago, when it actually goes back at least 4000.

The root in each of these words comes from the Proto-Indo-European root *genə- (or *gen-), meaning 'birth' and all the concepts attendant on it -- including noble birth, which gives rise to both the English words kind and gentle, which were once used to talk about the way those of noble birth behaved.

Some of the other descendants (Cognates, literally 'born together') of PIE *genə- are shown in this chart, which distinguishes literal descent from borrowings; after a few generations nobody notices whether a word is "native" or not, anyway.


Google has the answer.

Ingenious vs. Ingenuous

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    A link is not an answer. Please summarize what the link says, and why you think it is an accurate answer. – Marthaª Aug 26 '12 at 15:30
  • Given that the op – Roaring Fish Aug 26 '12 at 15:32
  • Um, something ate most of that comment... – Marthaª Aug 26 '12 at 15:39
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    Try again: given that the OP practically answers his own question, plus his previous question, plus the numerous times the same question appears in other forums, I don't see it as a serious question deserving of a detailed answer. Particularly when the answer is so easily found by asking Google.... – Roaring Fish Aug 26 '12 at 15:46
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    @Roaring Fish: I completely agree with the above comment, but I still think it would have been better to post the link in the answer as a comment to the question. – FumbleFingers Aug 26 '12 at 16:34

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