Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Please pass these to your teacher friends

Dear friends,


It would be useful if PNG students and teachers learned the derivation of words based on Latin and Greek roots. Combine these with an understanding of prefixes and suffixes and there is access for all to hundreds of words.

We are long distant members of the Roman Empire that brought Latin to England, France, Italy and Spain. Then Normans came to England and brought French words based on Latin. So English double-dipped into Latin. Australians brought English to Papua New Guinea.

Let us explore a selection of Latin and Greek roots. We have a new way of looking at English. There are not just thousands of words. There are dozens of word groupings.

It would be good if the roots of words were returned to the class room.

Students would enter a new world of language.



Latin                                      Greek


Every day                                   Official & scientific

words                                         words




Ago (actus) – I do.

agent, act, actor, react, reagent, agile, action, interact,



Ameas (amat) – Love, happy

amorous, amicable, amamas (tok pisin), amour (French)

amo (Italian), amiable.


Arche – rule

Monarchy, oligarchy, anarchy


Aster – a star

Aster daisy ( flower looks like a star), asteroid,

astronomy, astrology, asterisk, astronaut


Aves –the birds

Aviation, aviary, aviator


Baros – weight

Barometer, barometric,


Biblos – a book

Bible, bibliography, bibliotheque (French)


Cado ( cassus) – I fall

accident, cadence, cascade, decay, decadent, decadence.



Capio (captus) – I take

Capture, captive, captivate, escape, captivity


Caput – the head.

Cap, captain (English), Kapitano (Italian), Kapitain (Spanish) capital,

caption, decapitate, recapitulate.


Cedo (cessus)  - I go

Proceed, procession, recede, recession, concede, concession

intercede, intercession, cede, cession, precede, precedent.


Centum – a hundred

Century, cent, centurion, centavo (Spanish), centenary,



Claudo (claussus) - I shut

Exclude, exclusion, include, inclusion, clause, cloister,



Cor – the heart

Cordial, core, Coeur (French), courage, courageous, courtesy,

Sacre Coeur ( French Catholic)  Cor blimey ( English slang)


Corpus – the body

Corporal, corpse, corpulent, corporation. Corps, Corpus Christi

(Italian) , incorporate


Culpare – guilty

Culpable, Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa ( Latin Catholic)


Curro (cursus) – I run

Current, incur, incursion, recur, recurrent, course, cursory, cursive

discourse, cursor


Decim – ten

Decimal, decimate, decade, December (Julian calendar)


Demos – the people

Democracy, democratic 


Dens (dentis) – a tooth

Dentine, dentist, dental, denture, indent, indentation


Dico ( dictus) – I say

Predict, prediction, indict, indictment, diction, indicate,

indication, dicta-phone, dictionary,


Duco (ductus) – I lead

Duct, viaduct, oviduct, conduct, conductor, conduction

Duce ( Italian), reduce, reduction, deduce, deduction,

produce, product, production, introduce, introduction.


Eo – I go

Exit, exeunt (Shakespeare)


Facio ( factus) – I make

Factory, manufacture, facile, faction,


Fero ( latus)  - I bear

Refer, transfer, confer, reference, conference, relate,

translate, translation, collate


Finis – the end

Finish, pinis (tok pisin), finite, infinite, final, finality,

finissimo (Italian), finale, refine, refinery, finery


Flecto (flectus) I bend

Flexible, inflexible, reflect, reflection, deflect, deflection.

flex, inflexion. Reflex


Fluo – I flow

Fluid, fluent, fluency, influence, affluent, effluent


Fort (fortus) – strong

Fort, fortitude, fortissimo ( Italian),  Codral Forte,

comfort, comfortable.


Frango ( fractus) – I break

Fragile, fraction, fracture, fragment, fractious,


Fundo (fundus) – I pour

Fund, funnel, profound, refund


Ge –the earth

Geology, geography, geophysical,


Gradior (gressus) – a slope

Grade, gradual, gradient, gradually, degrade,



Grapho – I write

Photograph, telegraph, graph, graphite, graphic,


Homeo – the same

Homo sapiens, homophobia, homosexual, homogeneous


Jacio (jectus) – I throw

Inject, injection, project, projection, projector, reject, rejection

eject, ejection, ejaculate, deject, conjecture, interject, interjection


Judes – a judge

Judiciary, judge, judicial, judgment


Jungo (jungtus) – I join

Junction, juncture, adjunct, injunction, conjunction


Legis – law

Legal, illegal, legislate, legislation, legislature


Lego (lectus) - I gather

Lecture, college, religion, lecturn, collect, collection


Logos – a study or discourse

Biology, astrology, geology, anthropology, anthology,

monologue, catalogue, dialogue, epilogue


Luna – the moon

Lunar, la lune (French), lunatic (people believed to go

mad a the full moon)


Manus – the hand

Manual, manuscript, manage, management


Mater – a mother

Maternal, matron, ma’am, mama,


Metron – a measure

Meter, barometer, anemometer, thermometer,


Mitto (missus) –I send

Emit, emission, transmit, transmission, promise, commit, admit,

committee, commission,  admission, permit, permission


Moveo – I move

Mobile, automobile, mobility, immobile, movie


Nascor (nativitis) - I am born

Native, national, international, nativity, felice nativitat (Spanish) 


Pars (partus) – a part

Part, particle, particular, partition, participate, apartment, compartment,

repartee, separate, separation, impart


Pater – a father

Papa, paternal, patron, pastor,


Pathos – feeling

Pathos, pathetic, sympathy, apathy, empathy, antipathy


Pax – peace

Peace, compassion, Pacific Ocean, pacify, pacification


Pendeo (pendus) – I hang down

Pendant, pensive, penis, pendulum, suspend, penchant


Pes (pedus) – a foot

Pedal, pedestrian, pedometer


Phonos – sound

Telephone, phonetics, phone,


Phos – light

Photograph, phosphorus, photosynthesis, photogenic


Pleo – I fill

Complement, implement, implementation, supplement


Plico – I fold

Application, apply, reply, imply


Porto (portus)  - I carry

Port, report, transport, transportation, import, importation,

export, exportation, deport, deportation, deportee, important.


Premo (pressus) – I press

Press, pressure, express, depress, impresario (Italian) supreme,

impress, impression, compression


Primus – first

Prime, primary, primeval, primitive, imprimateur


Rex (regis) – a rule

Regal, vice-regal, tyrannosaurus rex


Polis – a city

Police, metropolis, metropolitan,


Pono (possus)  - I place

Postpone, opponent, expose, impose, repose, depose, deposit,

composite, composition,  position, expose


Sacre – holy

Sacred, sacristy, Sacred Coeur ( Catholic French)        


Scando (scandus) – I climb

Ascend, ascent, descend, descent, scandal


Skopeo - I view

Telescope, periscope, microscope, scope,


Secto (cidus)_ - I cut or kill

Dissect, dissection, bisect, intersect, intersection, suicide,

genocide, insecticide, spermacide, resection, section, sector,

sect, insect


Scribo ( scriptus) – I write

Describe, description, inscribe, inscription, conscription, scribe

scripture, scribble, prescribe, prescription, script


Specio (spectus) I see

Special, specialty, inspect, inspection, respect, spectacles, species,

introspect, introspection


Tango (tangus) - I touch

Tangible, intangible, tactile, tact, tactless


Tenio (tendus) – I hold

Tender, tendon, extend, intend, intention, contend, contention,

pretend, pretension, portend, tension, extension 


Terra – the earth

Terrestrial, terra firma, inter, interred, interment, extra- terrestrial,

Mediterranean ( middle of the earth) Terra nova, subterranean


Therme – heat

Thermal, thermometer, hypothermia, thermostat


Traho (tractus) – I draw

Tractor, traction, contract, extract, retract, contraction, retraction,

detract, detraction, distract, distraction


Video (vissus) – I see

Video player, DVD, vision, visible, invisible, revise, advice,



Venio – I come

Venture, convene, convention, invent, convent, veni-vidi-vinci

(I came- I saw- I conquered), prevent.


Verto (versus) – I turn

Revert, reverse, inverse, converse, convert, conversion, versus


Vinco -_I conquer

Convince, vanquish, invincible, HMS Invincible.


Volvo (volvus) – I roll

Revolve, revolver, Volvo car, involve, revolution, convolution,

convolvulus (flower)


Zoon – an animal

Zoo, zoology, zooplankton, zoological, spermatozoa, protozoan


If you are interested in words, please keep these on your computer and run your eye down the list from time to time. I learned these words from Grades 7-12 from 1958 to 1963. I will never forget. 






Bruce Copeland BA BEdSt   






1 comment:

  1. Anonymous5:18 PM

    I agree whole heartedly...

    Lingua speciem involutam praebet, sed sat cito eam comprehendes. Atque memento, nulli adsunt Romanorum qui locutionem tuam corrigant