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latin prefixes and suffixes

Latin Prefixes, roots and suffixes in english

Latin was the language spoken by the ancient Romans. As the Romans conquered most of Europe, the Latin language spread throughout the region. Over time, the Latin spoken in different areas developed into separate languages, including Italian, French, Spanish, and Portuguese. These languages are considered “sisters,” as they all descended from Latin, their “mother” language.

Linguists estimate that some 60% of our common everyday English vocabulary today comes from French. Thus, many Latin words came into English indirectly through French.

Many Latin words came into English directly, though, too. Monks from Rome brought religious vocabulary as well as Christianity to England beginning in the 6th century. From the Middle Ages onward many scientific, scholarly, and legal terms were borrowed from Latin.

During the 17th and 18th centuries, dictionary writers and grammarians generally felt that English was an imperfect language whereas Latin was perfect. In order to improve the language, they deliberately made up a lot of English words from Latin words. For example, fraternity, from Latin fraternitas, was thought to be better than the native English word brotherhood.

Many English words and word parts can be traced back to Latin and Greek. This latin prefixes and suffixes table, we list some common Latin roots, latin prefixes numbers and suffixes.

You can also check out this post on common Latin words in English language

Prefixes

The following table gives a list of Latin prefixes worksheet and their basic meanings.

The following table gives a list of Latin prefixes worksheet and their basic meanings.

Latin prefix

Basic meaning

Example words

co-

Together

coauthor, coedit, coheir

de-

away, off; generally indicates reversal or removal in English

deactivate, debone, defrost, decompress, deplane

dis-

not, not any

disbelief, discomfort, discredit, disrepair, disrespect

inter-

between, among

international, interfaith, intertwine, intercellular, interject

non-

Not

nonessential, nonmetallic, nonresident, nonviolence, nonskid, nonstop

post-

After

postdate, postwar, postnasal, postnatal

pre-

Before

preconceive, preexist, premeditate, predispose, prepossess, prepay

re-

again; back, backward

rearrange, rebuild, recall, remake, rerun, rewrite

sub-

Under

submarine, subsoil, subway, subhuman, substandard

trans-

across, beyond, through

transatlantic, transpolar

 

Suffixes and root

Words and word roots may also combine with suffixes. Here are examples of some important English suffixes that come from Latin

Latin suffix

Basic meaning

Example words

-able, -ible

forms adjectives and means “capable or worthy of”

likable, flexible

-ation

forms nouns from verbs

creation, civilization, automation, speculation, information

-fy, -ify

forms verbs and means “to make or cause to become”

purify, acidify, humidify

-ment

forms nouns from verbs

entertainment, amazement, statement, banishment

-ty, -ity

forms nouns from adjectives

subtlety, certainty, cruelty, frailty, loyalty, royalty; eccentricity, electricity, peculiarity, similarity, technicality

 

 

Latin root

Basic meaning

Example words

-dict-

to say

contradict, dictate, diction, edict, predict

-duc-

to lead, bring, take

deduce, produce, reduce

-gress-

to walk

digress, progress, transgress

-ject-

to throw

eject, inject, interject, project, reject, subject

-pel-

to drive

compel, dispel, impel, repel

-pend-

to hang

append, depend, impend, pendant, pendulum

-port-

to carry

comport, deport, export, import, report, support

-scrib-, -script-

to write

describe, description, prescribe, prescription, subscribe, subscription, transcribe, transcription

-tract-

to pull, drag, draw

attract, contract, detract, extract, protract, retract, traction

-vert-

to turn

convert, divert, invert, revert

 

Others

Here are some more Latin prefixes that you can commonly find in English Language

Prefix

Meaning

Example

a, an

without, not

asexual, amoral, anarchy, anhydrous, Anabaptist, anachronism

ab, abs, a

apart, away from

abnormal, abduct, abductor (muscle), abscission .See ad in Prefixes,

Ad

toward

adhere, adductor (muscle) . See ab in Prefixes section), adumbrate

Agree

act

agent, agency, agenda

amphi, ambi

round, both sides

amphitheater, amphibian, ambidextrous, ambivalent

Ante

before

antedate, anteroom, antecedent, anterior

Anthro

man

anthropology, anthropomorphic

Anti

against

antipathy, antitank, anticlimax

Aqua

water

aquarium, aqueous

archaios

ancient

archeology, archetype, archaic, archeozoic

Archos

leader, first, chief

monarchy, oligarchy, anarchy, archetype, architect

Audio

hear

audiophile, audiometer, auditory

Auto

self

automatic, automaton, auto-immune

Bi

two

bi-partisan, bisexual, biennial, binary, bicuspid, bivalve

Bene

well, favorable

benefit, benevolent, benefactor, beneficent

Bible

book

bibliography, Bible, bibliophile

Bio

life

biology, biography, bio-active

Caco

Bad

cacophony

Cide

kill

homicide, parricide, germicidal, ecocide

Circum

around

circumference, circumlocution, circumnavigate

constitutus

stand

constitution, statute

Corpus

body

corpse, corporeal punishment, corpus callosum

Cracy

rule

democracy, theocrat, technocracy

Credo

belief

credit, (see also roots section)

Demos

people

democracy, demographic

Di

two, double

dimorphism, dicotyledon, diatomic

Dia

across, through

diagonal, dialectic, dialogue, diagnosis

Dis

not, apart

disperse, disinherit, disenfranchise, distend

dominus

lord

dominant, dominion

dynasthai

be able

dynamic, dynamo, dynasty, dynamite

Ego

I, self

ego, egomaniac, egocentric,

 

Epi

upon, over

epidermis, epidemic, epigram, epitaph, epithet, epiphyte, epistasis, epinephrine, epiphysis

Ex

out

exotic, exterior, extraneous, extemporaneous, exophalmic, exogenous, exothermic, exoskeleton

federis

league, pact

federation, confederate

Frater

brother

fraternize, fraternity, fraternal, fratricide

Geo

earth

geology, geography, geocentric, geomancy

Graph

write, record

graphic, graphite, graphology,

Hetero

mixed, unlike

heterogeneous, heterosexual, heterodox, heterodont, hetero atom, heterocyclic, heterozygous,

Homo

same, alike

homogeneous, homogenized, homozygous, homolytic fission, Homo sapiens, homonid, homeostasis

Idem

the same

identity, idiopathic, I, individual

Ideo

idea

ideology, ideation, ideal

Idios

one’s own

idiom, idiosyncrasy, idiopathic

In

in

incarcerate, incorporate, inculcate, induction, inductance, indigenous, indicator, inspiration

in, im

not

incredible, ignoble, inglorious, inhospitable, infinite, infinitesimal, immoral

 

SOURCES

Latin Roots, Prefixes, and Suffixes – InfoPlease. https://www.infoplease.com/arts-entertainment/writing-and-language/latin-roots-prefixes-and-suffixes

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