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Questions tagged [prefixes]

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

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{Prefix Be-} When can this prefix be appropriately used explained simply? [on hold]

Okay, first, I'm terrible with English terminology like subordinate clauses, privatives, etc. Also it seems everywhere I go with the question of be- I either don't understand what it's saying because, ...
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Transcription and pronunciation of the 'un-' prefix in General American English

What's the correct transcription and pronunciation of the 'un-' prefix in General American English? Cambridge Online dictionary provides the following transcription: /ʌn/ It's the same in words with ...
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42 views

Water is to hydro as wind is to?

What is the generic name or collective adjective for things associated with wind and wind-generated electricity ? solar, hydro, anemoi?
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434 views

What did Colbert mean by “bedude form"?

In his most recent monologue on The Late Show, the comedian host Stephen Colbert, gently mocked a New York Times reporter's style of writing (watch the excerpt on YouTube) “500 words” she whispered,...
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40 views

Co-pay vs copartnership: Prefix hyphenation in AmE

In AmE, we tend to close up prefixes like co-, re-, pre-, post-, etc. unless the first letter of the main word is the same vowel as the last letter of the prefix. But I see some exceptions like ...
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Does the prefix “pre” connote negative meanings? Examples: “Presage” vs “sage”, “pretext” and “preclude”

I came across the word "presage" through the Vocabulary Builder as below presage (v.) presij to indicate something (usually bad) is about to happen. The sudden loss of jobs presaged an ...
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33 views

Service will be 'unavailable Saturday' vs '…unavailable on Saturday'

I want to perfect this system message the most I can and am over-thinking the use of the proper words. Is it better to say "Email will be unavailable Saturday 12/29 from 5 PM to 9 PM" or "Email will ...
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66 views

How can you determine whether a word with the pseudo- prefix should be hyphenated?

I am in a bit of a quandary over conflicting results in dictionary entries about the inclusion of a hyphen in some of the words containing the pseudo- prefix. An example of one of these words is ...
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Is there a prefix to denote neutrality?

English has prefixes to denote opposition as well as absence. For example: 'gnostic' vs 'agnostic' (having knowledge vs absence of knowledge) 'social' vs 'asocial' vs 'anti social' (being social, ...
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Is it okay to use “pre-” in a clause referring to “prelaunch”?

My question has to do with the word "prelaunch." According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the preferred spelling is without a hyphen. In the following clause, is it correct to use the hyphen after ...
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372 views

The use of “en-” vs “em-” as a verb prefix

The prefix en- (from French) has a variant spelling em-. (This is also associated, although I believe imperfectly, with the use of the sound /m/ in the pronunciation of the prefix.) Although the ...
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Is there a word for making a neologism by adding an “em” prefix to nouns or adjective?

I am a trusted critic of a friend's writing. I have noticed an (admittedly obnoxious) habit they have of "creating" new words by adding the "em" prefix to nouns or adjectives, like empurpled. For ...
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101 views

What is the grammatical name of prefixing a word by “A”?

I've noticed that in English, "some words" (I don't know if it could be used on all words) could be prefixed by the letter "a" to change the meaning, here are a few examples: Side and Aside ...
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59 views

Between two instances of a repeating event - “inter” or “intra”?

There is an annual event which some friends and I attend, let's call it "foodcon" for ease. I am thinking about hosting a small and informal "social catch up" for a circle of close friends from that ...
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102 views

Nonionic or non-ionic? [closed]

which is more correct or more frequently used? Nonionic or non-ionic (polymers)? It´s for an academic presentation.
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100 views

Is “catarolysis” a word? Whether it is or not, how might it be broken down into Greek or Latin derivatives?

Some definitions I have seen are: "catarolysis - n. - cursing to let off steam" and "catarolysis: letting off steam by cursing" and "catarolysis /kat uh RALL ih sis/ n The practice of cursing to ...
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646 views

How did we get both sub- and infra- prefixes?

It seems that both sub- and infra- are prefixes that mean "below", leading to their use in different words to provide a similar meaning. We even have some words that are the same apart from these ...
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2k views

When to use un-, im-, or in-? [duplicate]

adverbs like inefficient, inexpensive, unnbelievable..., imbossible Is there any roule? When to use? What to do
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Which is less ordinary? Super- or Extra- ordinary? [closed]

I would like to describe something that is even rarer than extraordinary. Does superordinary fit the bill?
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Can the prefix a- be appended to the word schismatic to form the word aschismatic, meaning the opposite of schismatic?

Can the prefix a- be appended to the word schismatic to form the word aschismatic, meaning the opposite of schismatic? Both the prefix a- and the word schism(atic) seem to be of Ancient Greek origin, ...
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1answer
41 views

Is it near real time, near real-time, near-real time, or near-real-time?

Your energy usage will be available in near real time near-real time near real-time near-real-time on your mobile. Which is/are correct? [Google Ngram]
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455 views

Do prefixes & suffixes have antonyms?

Question Do prefixes & suffixes have antonyms? As in, is it possible for a prefix or suffix to not have an antonym? Example Google defines "-gon" as: -gon combining form in nouns ...
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How did 'entreat', but not 'treat', shift to mean 'to enter into negotiations'?

entreat (v.) c. 1400, "to enter into negotiations," especially "discuss or arrange peace terms;" also "to treat (someone) in a certain way," from Anglo-French entretier, Old French entraiter "...
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A prefix that means “post-post-”?

Lets say I'm describing a musical genre, like post-punk. I want to create a song that's so advanced past post-punk, that I want to call it post-post-punk. However, the double-post looks abhorrent and ...
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Difference between the -genous and -ginous word suffixes

I was wondering whether anyone knows the exact difference between the English suffixes -agenous and -aginous. I believe the difference is that the first suffix has to do with describing the rough ...
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3k views

Non-existing or nonexisting [closed]

What is correct in English, non-existing or nonexisting? Searching sources on Google doesn't help much as both variants are widely present there. Onelook Dictionary Search doesn't show much about ...
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107 views

Update vs Outdate

I'm not sure if this question belongs on English SE, but the following question is about word origins. Let's take two words: update and outdate. Update means to make (something) more modern or up ...
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63 views

(un)conditional or (un-)conditional?

I want to write "conditional (mean imputation)" and "unconditional (mean imputation)" shorter, which of these 4 is the best way to do that? If multiple ways are correct, which is the most common (in ...
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70 views

How to decide the proper pronunciation, based on the roots of the word or how it is written as a whole new word?

For example these two words mix my mind about pronunciation. excite -> excitation ("excit" section pronounced the same) suicide -> suicidal ("suicid" section pronounced differently)
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Is the pro in processor Latin or Greek? [closed]

I want to describe single processor and many processor systems, and it seems like "uniprocessor" and "multiprocessor" are the accepted terms. However the "pro" in process looks Greek to me, which ...
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1answer
162 views

ec- vs ex- What is the difference [closed]

Both the prefix means the same thing eccentric - outer center vs external - outer all in all they means the same then what is the difference here?
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649 views

Contentious vs Contentment - same root but different meaning [closed]

I am having trouble in figuring it out why there is a difference between their meaning as i think that the root "content" is shared by both the words content + ious ; content + ment where contentment ...
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473 views

Difference between “disbelief” and “non-belief”

How should one use the words disbelief and non-belief especially when it relates to the belief in god? Consider these prefixes: Disbeliever of god Non-believer of god Do they have different ...
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455 views

Is there a name for when a prefix changes its meaning due to being strongly associated to a single word?

The prefix "crypto-" originally meant "hidden". Now, due to its association with "cryptography", the prefix has shifted to mean something more like "secure" when used in new words, e.g. "...
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80 views

How do you make a surname show where you live? [closed]

If one wanted to show where they came from, for example: first name: David Last name: of the white mountains Would there be a prefix/suffix? (like the "Mc" in McDonalds)
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Is “Reverend” a title, honorific, style or merely an adjective

Is it proper to introduce a clergyman as Reverend Johnson or is it more proper to refer to him as the Reverend Mr. Johnson ... or the Reverend Dr. Johnson, as the case may be? "This is Reverend John ...
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622 views

The opposite of xenophobia [duplicate]

No. I'm not talking about xenophilia. In both these senses, xenophobia and xenophilia relate to foreigners or strangers. I am looking for a fear of the same people who live in the same country as ...
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Can “alight” be used to mean “light”? [closed]

Usually, the verb (to) alight can be used to express: Landing somewhere Disembarking a vehicle But since you can also set something alight, I've been wondering if someone would light my cigar if I ...
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151 views

How does Alex Jones use the prefix 'Proto'? [closed]

Radiohost Alex Jones (and some of his audience) loves to attatch the prefix Proto- to everything: Quotes like these: "he managed to reveal himself as a proto-fascist stooge" And " Proto-patriot ...
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Is there a maximum number of prefixes that can be added to a word? [closed]

I need help with this for my homework, as for I am a seventh-grade honors student who in which just needs some help with this. The position I'm in is very tricky though, because the word I'm wanting ...
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69 views

Why is it immigrate and emigrate, but import and export (not emport)?

Is there a concrete linguistic reason why im- and ex- are used together in the case of goods but im- and em- in the case of people? Clearly, exigrate and emport sound odd, but are they a result of the ...
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279 views

Are there any rules when combining “semi-” with other words?

The definition of semi is half, partial. Examples like semi-annual/semiannual, semi-truck come up pretty often. However, I've gotten into a debate with some who used the term semi-sales to refer to a ...
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Why do so many prefixes mean “Not”

While trying to think of a brief list of English prefixes that mean "not" or "opposite to" in some way, I was wondering why so many exist. As English has roots in so many languages, I was hoping ...
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Pre- : prevalent , predominant

I am a computer scientist who's trying to analyze and endcode the meaning of morphemes or more higher level of abstraction to be represented and stored in a numerical data. While processing the ...
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115 views

Finding a word that starts with the prefix ultra or ult [closed]

I'm trying to find a word that starts with the prefix ultra or ult. It also has to describe someone's motives when they go "beyond" what they seem. That's the only information that I have been given.
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On quadrants, quintants, sextants, octants, nonants, etc [closed]

I have searched the internet for how to form the following words, but have been unable to find an authoritative source. They are obviously formed with latinate prefixes, but if you look at the lists ...
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why are Plurals for thousand, million and such unit are not used commonly, like in amount description?

why don't we say 2 thousands instead 2 thousand (just an example) in spite of it being more than a unit amount and neither is it an uncountable noun.
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Prefix Meaning “At Most”?

Is there a prefix meaning "at most" or "capped at"? I'd like to describe a spherical cap (Wikipedia, Wolfram) that is at most a hemisphere. The blue solid in the diagram below shows the type of cap I'...
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2k views

Homeo- or homoeo-?

"Homeo-" seems to be more widely used nowadays to the extent that "homoeo-" is listed as a variant of it, and "homoeostasis" is listed as a variant of "homeostasis". However, there are multiple posts ...
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Are there any synonymous alternatives to the prefix “exo”? [closed]

I'm specifically looking for another prefix that has the same or a similar meaning to "exo".