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Anno Mundi (A.M.)-In the year of the world. Bona fide-In good faith. Caret (^)-Mark to show an omission.

In toto-Altogether. !

Magna Charta - The Great
Maximum-The greatest.

Compos mentis Of sound Memento


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mori - Remember

Minimum-The least.

Nolens volens-Willing or unwilling.

Nota bene-Mark well.

Per se-By itself.

Per cent., or Per centum-By the hundred. Pinxit-Painted it.

Prima facie-At first view. Pro et con.-For and against. Pro tempore-For a time. Quid pro quo-Tit for tat. Quondam-Former.

Rara avis-A rare bird; a prodigy.

Resurgam-I shall rise again. Rex et Regina - King Queen.


Sine die-Without naming a day.

Sui generis-Of its kind.
Verbatim et literatim-Word
for word
Veto-I forbid.
Vice-In the room of.
Tice versa-The reverse.
Tiva voce-

-By word of mouth. Vi et armis-By force. Videlicet.-Namely.



Aide-de-camp-Assistant to a | Amateur-Admirer, lover of.


À la mode-In the fashion.

Antique Ancient.
A propos-To the purpose.

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Femme-de-chambre-A cham


Fracas-An altercation.

Liqueur-A cordial.
On dit-A rumour.
Plateau-A flat surface.
Protégé One patronised.
Ragoût-A seasoned dish.
Restaurateur-One who pro-
vides refreshments
Rouge-Red colour.
Savant-A learned man.
Soirée-An evening party.
Souvenir-A remembrance.
Table d'hôte-Hotel ordinary.
Tête-à-tête-A conference be-
tween two persons.
Tirade-A bitter harangue.

Tour-An excursion.

Trait-A feature, a charac


* Literally, white or blank paper or card: the generally received meaning is given; the same may be said of several other examples.


It has been remarked in a preceding page that the English language is composed of words derived from various dialects." Most English words may be traced to their origin in dead or foreign tongues. Thus we find army, armament, armorial, &c., come from arma, the Latin word for arms, weapons. We shall not enter at length into this investigation, which is beside the purpose of a work designed to teach spelling, not the history of language; but it may be well to devote a few lines to the subject of Derivation.

The same word may be a noun, verb, or adjective. A noun

* See page 2.

may be derived from another noun, a verb, or an adjective. Adjectives may be derived from nouns and verbs, and verbs from nouns and adjectives.

Most English derivatives are formed by adding a prefix to the beginning of the root, as in re-turn; or an affix (or suffix) to the end of the root, as in turn-ing; some, however, are formed by a modification of the vowel, the final consonant, or the vowel and consonant. The greater number of prefixes are preposi


In Saxon or English prefixes, A signifies at, to, in, or on; as aboard. Be signifies nigh, before, to make; as in bestir. Em, en, im, signify in, on, make; as embolden. For,-from; as forsake. Fore, before; as foredoom. Mis,-failure, evil; as misplace. Out, beyond; as outstrip. Over, in excess, above, beyond, reverse; as overreach, overcome. Un,-not, a contrary act; as unkind, unset. Up,-elevation; as uprise. With,against, away from; as withstand.

In Greek prefixes, A or an signify without, deprived of; as anarchy. Amphi,-about, in both ways; as amphibious. Anti, -against, contrary to; as antidote. Ana,-back, again; as analyse. Apo,-from; as apostle (one sent from). Dia,through; as diagonal. Em, en,-in, om; as emphasis (stress on). Epi-something upon; as epitaph. Hyper,-over; as hypercritical. Para, beside, with, from; as parallel. Peri,-round about; as perimeter. Sy, syl, sym, syn,-with, together; as synod, syllable, synopsis.

In Latin prefixes, A, ab, abs signify away, from; às in abstract, avert. Ad, ac, af, ag, al, an, ar, as, at, signify at or to; as adinit, adopt, acquire, attain. Ante,-before; as antecedent, antediluvian. Bis, by,-twice or two; as biped. Cir (circu),-around; as circular. Contra (contro),—against, counter; as contravene. De,-down, from, about; as depose, deduce. Di, dis,-negation or separation; as dismiss, divert. E, ex,out of; as eject, exude. Extra,-beyond, without; as extraneous. Ig, il, im, in, ir,—not, in, into, upon; as ignorant, irradiate, imprudent. Inter,-among; as intersperse. Intro (for intra),—within; as introduce. Ob, oc, of, op,-against, in opposition, to place before; as obstruct, offer. Per (pel),-pass through; as, pervade. Post,-after; as postscript. Pre, before; as preoccupy. Preter,-beyond, beside as preternatural. Pro,for, forth; as pronoun, project. Re,-back, cast back; as retort. Se,-apart; as separate. Sub, suc, suf, sug, sup, sur, sus, -under, after; as succeed (come after), suffer, subject, submerge. Super,-over, upon; as supernumerary, superadd. Trans,―across, over; as transfer, transcribe. Ultra,—beyond;

as ultramontane.

Inseparable prepositions, or those only met with in compound words, are co, col, com, con, cor,—with or together; as in coeval, conspire. Di, dif, dis,-to part asunder; as disperse. Ne (for non).-not; as in neglect (not care). Re,—again or back; as in report. Se,-aside, draw apart; as in seclude.

En, ful, ish, ly, most, some, ward, and y are Saxon terminations (affixes or suffixes) to adjectives; as in olden, joyful, foolish, manly, topmost, eastward, earthy.

Al, dom, er, ing, hood, ry, ship, and th are Saxon affixes to nouns; as trial, freedom, ladder, boyhood, masonry, kinship, health.

Ar, ard, er, eer, ster, yer, are Saxon affixes to nouns signifying persons; as liar, farmer, sluggard, teamster.

Ment and age are French terminations to nouns; as vassalage, advancement.

Archy, graphy, logy, meter, scope, tomy, and ism are Greek terminations; as in anarchy, cosmography, chronometer, horoscope, anatomy, baptism.

An or ian, ant or ent, ate or ite, ary, ist, and or are Latin terminations to nouns meaning persons; as in librarian, student, magistrate, commissary, communist, sculptor.

Of Latin nouns signifying things, some end in ance, ence, ancy, ency, ety, ity, ion, itude, mony, sion, and tion; as in elegance, competence, fancy, vulgarity, division, fortitude, matri


Various derivative verbs signifying to form something, end in ate, en, ify, ize; as in aggravate, fasten, purify, utilize.

Some derivative adjectives end in ant, ent, and ous; as in abundant, frequent, and ambitious.

Others signifying belonging to, of, terminate in an, ab, ar, ary or ory, ic or ical, and ine; as in Christian, conical, peculiar, pecuniary, frantic, and masculine.

Adjectives implying worth, ability, or blame end in able or ible; as in abominable, eatable, edible, creditable. These derivative verbs and adjectives are mostly of Latin origin.

The general meaning of a word being known, its various shades of expression are usually given by an affix following the root. To the roots, or primitive words, we advise the learner to direct his chief attention: when once he has mastered these, a little practice will enable him to add prefixes and affixes with perfect facility.


Earnestly hoping that to the writer, the student, and the instructor we may afford welcome assistance in the difficulties of spelling and teaching to spell correctly, we close with some whimsical lines by Theodore Hook, forcibly illustrating how great a difference in sense may be produced by a very slight change of orthography.


My little dears who learn to read, pray early learn to shun
That very silly thing, indeed, which people call a pun;

Read Entick's rules, and 'twill be found how simple an offence
It is to make the selfsame sound afford a double sense.

For instance, ale may make you ail, your aunt an ant may kill;
You in a vale may buy a veil, and Bill may pay the bill.
Or if to France your bark you steer, at Dover, it may be,
A peer appears upon the pier, who, blind, still goes to sea.

Thus one might say when to a treat good friends accept our greeting,

'Tis meet that men who meet to eat, should eat their meat when


Brawn on the board's no bore indeed, although from boar pre


Nor can the fowl on which we feed, foul feeding be declared.

Thus one ripe fruit may be a pear, and yet be pared again,
And still be one, which seemeth rare until we do explain.
It therefore should be all your aim to speak with ample care;
For who, however fond of game, would choose to swallow hair?

A fat man's gait may make us smile, who has no gate to close;
The farmer, sitting on his stile, no stylish person knows.
Perfumers men of scents must be; some Scilly men are bright;
A brown man oft deep read we see a black, a wicked wight.

Most wealthy men good manors have, however wealthy they; And actors still the harder slave, the oftener they play.

So poets can't the baize obtain, unless their tailors choose; While grooms and coachmen, not in vain, each evening seek the mews.

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