'Lesson Seven'


'In this lesson we present the most common and important prefixes and suffixes, with examples.'

'The purpose of these affixes is to show how they can be combined with other words to form new ones. These affixes need not be learned at once, but you should have a good idea of how to use them in forming new words, and thereby learn to reduce the mass of vocabulary that one needs to have to communicate thoughts to others.'

'Since the English language is the result of the fusion of Germanic and Romance elements, it has an extraordinarily greater lexicon than the other languages of the Indo-European family. Consequently, English is the richest language in synonyms, whereby the same idea can be expressed in several different ways. English is also the language with most international words, which aids in its simplification process. The affixes of this lesson are another aspect of its tendency toward simplification.'


ùn- (un-) 'produces a contrary meaning to the word to which it is attached: bilîvàbèl (believable, ' '), ùnbilîvàbèl (unbelievable, ' '); huk (to hook, ' '), ùnhúk (to unhook, ' ').'

dis- (dis-) 'is similar to an- (un-), indicating separation or undoing: àsémbèl (to assemble) ' ', disàsémbèl (disassemble) ' ', àgrî (agree) ' ', disàgrî (disagree) ' '.'

eks- (ex-) 'indicates a former condition: eksprézìdent (ex-president) ' ', eks-hùzbànd (ex-husband) ' '.'

get (get) 'is a very versatile verb, which among other things means 'reach, acquire, obtain, receive,' and which can be combined with almost all prepositions, adjectives, adverbs and nouns in the language in order to indicate an action that approaches the meaning of the preposition, adjective, adverb or noun: get ùp (get up) ' ', get dawn (get down) ' ', get fat (get fat) ' ', get àwéy (get away) ' ', get gift (get gift) ' '.'

grüp- (group-) 'signifies a group or collection of things: grüptîchèrs (faculty), ' ', grüpshîps (flock of sheep) ' ', grüpb`írds (flock of birds) ' ', grüp-pïpèls (multitude) ' ', grüptrîs (woods, forest) ' ', grüpbîs (swarm of bees) ' ', etc.'

not- (not-) 'negates the idea that follows, and it can also function similar to ùn- or dis-, producing a opposite idea of the original meaning of the word to which it becomes attached: klowz (close) ' ', notklówz (open) ' ', rich (rich) ' ', notrích (poor) ' ', byütifùl (beautiful) ' ', notbyûtifùl (ugly) ' ', pritï (pretty) ' ', notprítï (homely) ' '.'

mis- (mis-) 'to do something incorrectly: print (print) ' ', misprínt (misprint) ' ', reprizént (represent) ' ', misreprizént (misrepresent) ' '.'

ri- (re-) 'to repeat an action: kòm (come) ' ', rik`óm (come back, return) ' ', print (print) ' ', riprínt (reprint) ' '.'


-àbèl, -abèl (-able) Possibility:

-er, -r (-er) 'When joined to an adjective, it serves to form the comparative of the adjective, and is equal in sense to 'more'': -est, -èst (-est) 'Converts the adjective into a superlative form, equivalent to the meaning of 'most...'': Although it is written -est the ending may be heard with the neutral vowel -èst: -fùl (-ful) 'Adjectival suffix which denotes fullness': -i (-ey, -y) 'Diminutive which denotes affection': -ing (-ing) 'A participial ending which converts the verb into an adjective or into a noun; while, when preceded by the verb , it produces the PROGRESSIVE TENSE which describes an action in progress:' -ist (-ist) 'Profession or occupation': - (-law) 'Indicates a relationship contracted by marriage':

'EXERCISES': 'Here you Spanish Flamenco Dancer have some words in Transitional English with their translations, and some new words which are formed with the above affixes (prefixes and suffixes). TRANSLATE THESE WORDS INTO YOUR OWN LANGUAGE. Give the closest meaning that you can think of to the meaning that you understand in Transitional English.'

  1. hùzbànd: eks-hùzbànd.
  2. hors: horsi, horspleys.
  3. wörm: notwôrm, wörmèr.
  4. bï: grüpbîs, bïpleys.



    Utilizing the prefixes and suffixes, translate the following words into Transitional English':

  6. 'to get up'
  7. 'to get a gift'
  8. 'swarm of bees'
  9. 'tool shed'
  1. ' '
  2. ' '
  3. ' '
  4. ' '
  5. get ùp
  6. get gift
  7. grüpbîs
  8. tülpleys
'Some of the compound words in this lesson are not used frequently in speech, nor in writing, while others are used so much that they become just simple words.' 


    A. 'Translate the following words into your own language':
  1. byütifùl
  2. misreprizént
  3. bilîvàbèl



    B. 'Translate the words of your language, with the help of those within brackets into Transitional English,':

  5. [biggest] ' '
  6. [disassemble] ' '
  7. [unbelievable] ' '
  8. [tallest] ' '
'ANSWERS': ('These or similar words.')
  1. ' '
  2. ' '
  3. ' '
  4. bigest
  5. disàsémbèl
  6. ùnbilîvàbèl
  7. tölest, 


  1. (not clean) ' '
  2. (brother-in-law) ' '
  3. (get up) ' '
  4. (reprint) ' '
  5. (not pretty) ' '
  6. (get fat) ' '
  7. (get sick) ' '
  8. (sister-in-law) ' '
'ANSWERS (*1-8)'
  1. not klïn
  2. bròdhèr-in-lö
  3. get ùp
  4. riprínt
  5. notprítï
  6. get fat
  7. get sik
  8. sistèr-in-lö


'A friendly letter usually starts with an indication of place of origin, followed by the date, and the greeting. Then comes the body of the letter, and the letter customarily ends with the farewell, "Sinsíèrlï (Sincerely)." and the writer's name. Below is an example of one such letter.' 


àgén (again), adv. ' '
Októwbèr (October), n. ' '
beysböl (baseball), n. ' '
baskitböl (basketball), n. ' '
börn (born), v. 'llevado'; bïed born (beed born), v. ' '
dhat (that), pron. ' '
enjìníèring (engineering), n. ' '
ikspénses (expenses), n. pl. ' '
finish (finish), v. ' '
föl (fall), n. ' '
gìrlfrend (girl friend), n. ' '
help (help), v. ' '
India (India), p.n. ' '
ïvning (evening), n. ' '
kan (can), v. ' '
last (last), adj. ' '
letèr (letter), n. ' '
mùst (must), v. ' '
mïting (meeting), n. ' '
müvi (movie), n. ' '
naw (now), adv. ' '
popyùlàr (popular), adj. ' '
pey (pay), v. ' '
pley (play), v. ' '
rïsènt (recent), adj. ' '
sokèr (soccer), n. ' '
sùmèr (summer), n. ' '
sòmthing (something), pron. ' '
send (send), v. ' '
Sinsìnátï (Cincinnati), p.n. ' '
Sinsíèrlï (sincerely), adv. ' '
skül (school), n. ' '
sport (sport), n. ' '
sün (soon), adv. ' '
tel (tell), v. ' '
tenìs (tennis), n. ' '
Tìtánik = Taytánik (Titanic), p.n. ' '
vizìt (visit), v. ' '
woch (watch), v. ' '
wïkend (weekend), n. ' '
yiàr (year), n. ' ' 


Cincinnati, Ohio
Októwbèr 31, 1998

Diàr Mayk,

     It bïed gud mïting yü hièr last yiàr. And ay layked ov-yü rïsènt letèr, dhat yü sended from India. Yü asked dhat ay tel yü sòmthing àbáwt ay. Ay bïed born in Cincinnati in 1978. Naw ay gow tu yünìv`érsìtï. Ay stùdï enjìníèring. During sùmèr ay wòrk in kònstr`úkshòn tu_help pey skül ikspénses.

     On wïkends ay layk pley sokèr, tenìs, and beysböl. In föl ay layk pley baskitböl. Baskitböl bï verï popyùlàr sport hièr. Sòm ïvnings, ay woch telèvizhòn. Bùt, Fraydey ïvnings ay gow with ov-ay gìrlfrend sï müvi, layk "Titanic [Tìtánik]."

     Yü ask wen ay wil kòm vizìt yü in India. Ay wud layk du dhat sün, bùt ay mùst weyt ùntil ay finish yünìv`érsìtï.

     Plïz rayt tu ay ölsow àbáwt yü, and kòm sï wi àgén wen yü kan.


Edward [Edwàrd] 


'{Translator: translation of the above letter goes here in your language, and that of your compatriots for whom you are preparing this text of Transitional English.}' 

'EXERCISE': 'In Transitional English write a brief letter to a friend or a member of your family.'

Click here for the Transitional English to Standard English and 'Your language' vocabulary. ('Translate the preceding sentence into your language'.) Click here for the Standard English to Transitional English and 'Your language' vocabulary. ('Translate the preceding sentence into your language.') Click here for 'Your language' to Transitional English and Standard English vocabulary. ('Translate the preceding sentence into your language'.)
Click here for Langenscheidt's 'Your language'-English English-'Your language' on-line dictionary. ('Translate the preceding sentence into your language.')

Plantation in Natchez, MS


Last revised on 24 April 2001