Membean is an incredibly effective way to learn words and permanently remember them.
Learn more on how we help for Test Prep, Personal Learning, or get it for your School.

Word Root Of The Day Archive

#130 May 16, 16

spir

breathe

The Latin root word spir means “breathe.” This root is the word origin of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including inspire, respiration, and expire. The root spir is easily recalled via the word perspiration, that is, sweat in the act of “breathing” through the pores of your skin.

Read more

#129 May 02, 16

volv

roll

The Latin root word volv and its variants volut and volt mean “roll” or “turn round.” These roots are the word origins of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including revolve, involve, evolution, and revolt. The roots volv and volut are easily recalled through the words involve, or “roll” in, and revolution, or a “rolling” back against a current government or other system in power.

Read more

#128 Apr 15, 16

posit

placed, put

The Latin root word posit means “placed.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including opposite, composition, and posit itself. The Latin root word posit is easily recalled through the word position, for a “position” is the way in which you find yourself “placed.”

Read more

#127 Apr 01, 16

voc

call

The Latin root word voc and its variant vok both mean “call.” These roots are the word origins of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including vocal, vocabulary, invoke, and provoke. The roots voc and vok are easily recalled through the words vocal, of “calling,” and revoke, to “call” back.

Read more

#126 Mar 15, 16

dia-

through

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. A fair number of English vocabulary words contain the prefix dia-, which means “across.” Examples using this prefix include dialogue, diagonal, and diabetes. An easy way to remember that the prefix dia- means “across” is through the word diameter, for the diameter of a circle is the measurement “across” it.

Read more

#125 Mar 01, 16

extra-

outside

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. The English prefix extra-, which means “outside,” appears in a fair number of English vocabulary words, such as extra, extraterrestrial, and extraordinary. You can remember that the prefix extra- means “outside” from the adjective extraordinary, which refers to something which is “outside” or beyond what is usually considered ordinary.

Read more

#124 Feb 15, 16

equ

equal

The Latin root word equ means “equal.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including adequate, equator, and equality. The Latin root word equ is easily recalled through the word equation, for both sides of an equation are, by definition, “equal” to one another!

Read more

#123 Feb 01, 16

fid

trust, faith

The Latin root word fid means “trust.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including confident, fidelity, and perfidy. The Latin root word fid is easily recalled through the popular dog name “Fido,” whom his master can “trust” to be ever loyal.

Read more

#122 Jan 01, 16

dis-

apart, not

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. A large number of English vocabulary words contain the prefix dis-, which means “apart.” Examples using this prefix include distant, disease, and disqualify. An easy way to remember that the prefix dis- means “apart” is through the word disorder, for items which are disordered are “apart” from being “ordered,” hence are not ordered or are in quite the mess.

Read more

#121 Dec 15, 15

per-

thoroughly

The prefix per-, besides meaning “through,” can also act as an intensive prefix, adding emphasis to a given word’s root. An intensive prefix can be effectively translated as “thoroughly” or “very” to highlight its emphatic function. For instance, the prefix per-, such as in perfect, means to do something so “thoroughly” that nothing more can be done to it.

Read more

#120 Dec 01, 15

ego

I

The Latin root word ego means “I.” This Latin root is the word origin of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including ego and egotistical. The Latin root word ego is easily recalled through the English word ego—someone with a big ego is always thinking about number one, that is, himself, and how great he is.

Read more

#119 Nov 16, 15

ge

earth

The Greek root word ge, commonly used in the English prefix geo-, means “earth.” This Greek root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including geology, geography, and geometry. The Greek root word ge is easily recalled through the English word geology, which is the study of the “earth.”

Read more

#118 Nov 01, 15

terr

earth, land

The Latin root word terr means “earth, land.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including terrain, terrarium, and Mediterranean. The Latin root word terr is easily recalled through the English word terrain, for the terrain of an area is what the “earth” or “land” is like there.

Read more

#117 Oct 15, 15

per-

through

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. The English prefix per-, which means “through,” appears in hundreds of English vocabulary words, such as perish and person. You can remember that the prefix per- means “through” via the word permanent, for something that is permanent stays intact “through” the years.

Read more

#116 Oct 01, 15

plex

weave

The Latin root word plex means “weave.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including complexity, perplexed, and googolplex. The Latin root word plex is easily recalled through the word duplex, for a “duplex” is a single building in which two living spaces have been “woven” together.

Read more

#115 Sep 15, 15

spect

see

The Latin root word spect and its variant spic both mean “see.” These roots are the word origin of a fair number of English vocabulary words, including spectator, respect, auspicious and suspicion. The root spect is easily recalled through the word spectacles, whose function is giving you the ability to “see,” and spic is conspicuous, or easily “seen” through, yes, conspicuous!

Read more

#114 Sep 01, 15

cred

believe

The Latin root word cred means “believe.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including credit, credo, and credentials. The Latin root word cred is easily recalled through the English word incredible, for if something incredible happens it can hardly be “believed.”

Read more

#113 May 07, 15

crat

rule

The Greek root word crat means “rule,” and the English suffix -cracy means “rule by.” This Greek root and suffix is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including the familiar terms democrat and democracy. The Greek root word crat and suffix -cracy are easily recalled through these two English words, “democracy” meaning “rule by” the people, and “democrat” being someone who specifically supports “rule” by the people.

Read more

#112 Feb 14, 15

flor

flower

The Latin root word flor means “flower.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including florist, floral, and Florida. The Latin root word flor is easily recalled through the word florist, for a “florist” is the person who sells the “flowers” that people buy on major holidays, such as Valentine’s Day.

Read more

#111 Jan 08, 15

nov

new

The Latin root word nov means “new.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including novel, supernova, and renovate. The Latin root word nov is easily recalled through the English word novel, for a novel experience is one that has never happened before and so is “new” to you.

Read more

#110 Nov 25, 14

flu

flow, stream

The Latin root word flu means “flow.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including flu, influence, and fluid. The Latin root word flu is easily recalled through the English word fluid, for a fluid is a state of matter which, if not contained, “flows.”

Read more

#109 Oct 31, 14

mort

death

The Latin root word mort means “death.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including mortgage, mortuary, and immortal. The Latin root word mort is easily recalled through the word mortal, for a “mortal” is someone whom “death” will claim one day.

Read more

#108 Sep 12, 14

non-

not

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. The English prefix non-, which means “not,” appears in hundreds of English vocabulary words, such as nonsense, nonfat, and nonreturnable. You can remember that the prefix non- means “not” via the word nonpoisonous, for a substance that is nonpoisonous is “not” poisonous.

Read more

#107 Aug 06, 14

verb

word

The Latin root word verb means “word.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including verb, adverb, and proverb. The Latin root word verb is easily recalled through the English word verb, for a verb is simply a “word” which tells what’s going on in a sentence, usually an action of some sort.

Read more

#106 Jul 11, 14

ab-

away, from

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. The English prefix ab-, which means “away,” appears in many English vocabulary words, such as absent, abduct, and absolute." You can remember that the prefix ab- means “away” via the word absent, for someone who is absent is “away” from a place, such as school or work.

Read more

#105 Jun 09, 14

ante-

before

Prefixes are key morphemes in English vocabulary that begin words. The English prefix ante-, which means “before,” appears in a fair number of English vocabulary words, such as antebellum and antedate. You can remember that the prefix ante- means “before” from the poker term ante, which means to put money into the pot “before” each round of the poker game begins.

Read more

#104 May 05, 14

anthrop

human

The Greek root word anthrop means “human.” This Greek word root is the origin of a number of English vocabulary words, including anthropology and anthropomorphic. The Greek root word anthrop can be recalled through the word philanthropist, for a “philanthropist” is someone who etymologically “loves humans,” and so does all she or he can to help the “human” race via unselfish support.

Read more

#103 Apr 04, 14

centr

center

The Latin root word centr means “center.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including central, eccentric, and concentrate. The Latin root word centr is easily recalled through the word egocentric, for someone who is egocentric is someone whose own “center” or self is first and foremost, above all others.

Read more

#102 Mar 05, 14

am

love

The Latin root word am means “love.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including amateur, amatory, and Amanda. The Latin root word am is easily recalled through the word amor, or “love,” which is not only both the Spanish and Latin words for “love,” but is often used in English to refer to Cupid, the god of “love” whom we see flying around on Valentine’s Day causing so much trouble!

Read more

#101 Feb 03, 14

loc

place

The Latin root word loc means “place.” This Latin root is the word origin of a large number of English vocabulary words, including local and locomotive. The word root loc is easily recalled through the word location, for a “location” is simply a “place” where something or someone is.

Read more