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Prefixes and Suffixes

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Prefixes and Suffixes

Prefixes and Suffixes

Introduction

In the English language, prefixes and suffixes play a critical role in the formation and understanding of words. These affixes, when added to the beginning or end of a base word, can alter its meaning, function, and even its grammatical category. As such, a solid grasp of prefixes and suffixes is essential for English language learners and writers who wish to expand their vocabulary, enhance their comprehension, and improve their linguistic proficiency. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of prefixes and suffixes, exploring their definitions, functions, and examples, to equip readers with the knowledge needed to effectively utilize these linguistic tools in their pursuit of English mastery.

Prefixes and Suffixes

What are prefixes and suffixes?

A prefix is a letter or group of letters added to the beginning of a word to change its meaning.
A suffix is a letter or group of letters added to the end of a word to change its meaning.

Remember!

1. When adding a prefix, do not change the spelling of the original word.

EXAMPLES 
  • un + important  unimportant 
  • mis + spell  misspell

2. When adding the suffix –ness or –ly, do not change the spelling of the original word.

EXAMPLES 
  • careless + ness  carelessness 
  • love + ly  lovely

If a word ends in y, you may need to change the y to i before adding –ness or –ly. For most words that have two or more syllables and end in y, change the y to i before adding –ness or –ly.

EXAMPLES 
  • messy + ness  messiness 
  • happy + ly  happily

3. Drop the final silent e before adding a suffix that begins with a vowel.

4. Keep the final silent e before adding a suffix that begins with a consonant.

A silent e is not pronounced when you say the word.

EXAMPLES 
  • imagine + able  imaginable [The suffix –able begins with a vowel, so the final silent e is dropped.] 
  • awe + some  awesome [The suffix –some begins with a consonant, so the final silent e is not dropped.]

5. For words ending in y preceded by a consonant, change the y to i before adding any suffix that does not begin with i.

EXAMPLES 
  • steady + ly  steadily [The suffix –ly does not begin with i.] 
  • classify + ing  classifying [The suffix –ing begins with i.]

6. For words ending in y preceded by a vowel, keep the y when adding a suffix.

EXAMPLE 
  • employ + ment  employment [The y follows the vowel o.]

7. Double the final consonant before adding a suffix that begins with a vowel if the word both
(a) has only one syllable or has the accent on the final syllable and
(b) ends in a single consonant preceded by a single vowel.

EXAMPLES 
  • swim + ing  swimming [Swim has only one syllable and ends in a single consonant preceded by a single vowel. The final consonant is doubled.] 
  • break + able  breakable [Break has only one syllable, but it does not end in a single consonant preceded by a single vowel. The final consonant is not doubled.]

Prefixes and Suffixes Quizizz Quiz

Conclusion

In conclusion, understanding the rules for adding prefixes and suffixes to words is essential for maintaining correct spelling and meaning adjustments. By following specific guidelines, such as not changing the spelling of the original word when adding a prefix or suffix, one can effectively enhance their vocabulary and writing skills.
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Mr. ‏El-Sayed Ramadan ‎ ‎

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