File - Don's EnglishZone

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Common Prefixes
A prefix is a letter or group of letters that you add to the beginning of a word. It gives a different meaning to the
word. If you see a word that you don’t know, but you do know the prefix and the base word, you can guess the
meaning.
Just 20 prefixes account for 97 percent of all words with prefixes, and nine of those 20 account for 75
percent. Students may come across other prefixes while reading, but knowing at least these most common prefixes
will be helpful.
Following are the 20 most common prefixes.
Rank
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
All Others
Prefix
% of All Prefixed Words
un- (opposite)
26
re- (again)
14
in-, im-, il-, ir- (not)
11
dis- (not)
7
en-, em- (put into)
4
non- (not)
4
in-, im- (in)
3
over- (excessive)
3
mis- (bad or incorrect)
3
sub- (below)
3
pre- (before)
3
inter- (between)
3
fore- (earlier)
3
de- (reverse)
2
trans- (across)
2
super- (above)
1
semi- (half)
1
anti- (opposite)
1
mid- (middle)
1
under- (too little)
1
4
Example Words:
un- (not)
uncertain
re- (again)
unable, uncover, undo, unequal, unfair, unhappy, unkind, unlock, unwrap, unbutton,
reappear, rearrange, recount, redo, refill, refresh, reheat, replay, retell
in-, im-, il-, ir- (not)
impatient, imperfect, impolite, impossible, impure, inactive, incomplete, immovable,
independent, invisible, illiterate, illogical, irregular, irreverent, irreplaceable
dis- (not)
disagree, disappear, disconnect, dishonest, dislike, disobey, disorder, disown, distrust
en-, em- (put into)
enjoy, endure, enrage
non- (not)
nonverbal, nonsense, nonstop
in-, im- (in)
incorporate, influx, import
over- (excessive)
overdue, overboard, overburden, overact, overcrowd, overlook, overpass
mis- (bad)
misbehave, misinform, misjudge, mislead, misplace, misfit
sub- (below)
subconscious, subway, subzero, submarine
pre- (before)
predict, predate, predetermine, preoccupy
inter- (between)
interact, interchange, interstate
fore- (earlier)
forefather, foreknowledge, foresight
de- (reverse)
deform, defrost
trans- (across)
transform, transportation, transact
super- (above)
supernatural, supermarket, superman
semi- (half)
semicircle, semiannual, semiprivate, semicolon, semiconductor
anti- (opposite)
antibiotic, antibody, antifreeze, anticlimax
mid- (middle)
midday, midnight, midsummer, midway, midwinter
under- (too little)
underdeveloped, underage, underestimate
Common Suffixes
Suffix
-able
-al
-ant
-ance
-ee
-en
-ence
-ent
-ful
-hood
-ible
-ice
-id
-ish
-ine
-it
-ite
-ive
-ize
-less
-ment
-ness
-ward
-cian
-ciate
-cient
-cial
-tial
-sial
-cious
-tious
-xious
Example Words
capable, notable, desirable
central, coastal, general, hospital
pleasant, important, distant, constant
continuance, allowance, abundance, balance
employee, trustee
harden, sweeten, golden, driven
excellence, evidence, difference, reference
innocent, confident, ardent, eloquent
cheerful, careful, wonderful, shameful
manhood, statehood, womanhood
possible
justice, service, notice, practice
timid, solid, valid, frigid
finish, vanish, punish, abolish, perish
engine, famine, genuine
limit, deposit
definite, infinite, opposite
relative, possessive, active, effective
realize, fertilize, specialize, apologize
shameless, careless, restless, blameless
assignment, department, apartment, agreement
happiness, sickness, brightness, darkness
awkward, downward, upward
Grecian, politician, musician
appreciate, emaciate
proficient, efficient, sufficient
racial, social, facial, crucial
partial, initial, essential
controversial
gracious, delicious, vicious
facetious, pretentious, ostentatious
anxious, obnoxious, noxious
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