Quick Summary

The Latin root word sid and its variant sed both mean “sit.” These roots are the word origin of many English vocabulary words, including sedative, sediment, president, and reside. For instance, a residence is a place where its residents are able to “sit” back; a sedentary person likes to “sit” around a lot instead of being active.

Sid Sits with Sed

The Latin root word sid and its variant sed both mean “sit.”

Let’s first take a look at the root sid. Consider Sydney, a resident of a city, or that place where she “sits” back for a long time. She can “sit” in comfort at her residence, or that home where she is able to “sit” at leisure. Imagine that Sydney is president of a profitable company; as president, she “sits” in charge of her employees. In such a role she presides, or “sits” before everyone else as top dog.

Consider Sydney’s dismay when she finds out that there is a dissident in her company, or one who “sits” apart from those around him because he holds different opinions. Sydney considers rebels like that insidious, or “sitting” in secret ambush to upend her. Sydney ensures that his dissension will soon subside, or “sit” or settle down, and eventually go away, by offering him more money.

A variant of the root sid is sed, which also means “sit.” Do you know anyone who is a serious couch potato? He would be a good example of a sedentary person, or one who likes to “sit” around a lot. Has a doctor ever had to sedate you because you were too active? That sedative she gave you would cause you to settle or to “sit” down, forcing you to be inactive.

You may have learned in geology that sediment is that particulate matter that eventually “sits” upon or settles to the bottom of a body of water. Sedimentary rock is formed from that settled dirt and debris that has “sat” there and eventually compacted after a long time.

No longer will you have to “sit” down at a dictionary, thumbing through it to discover that sid and sed are both linguistically settled as “sit!”

  1. resident: one who ‘sits’ back somewhere
  2. residence: place where one ‘sits’ back
  3. president: one who ‘sits’ before
  4. preside: to ‘sit’ before
  5. dissident: one who ‘sits’ apart from others
  6. insidious: of one who ‘sits’ in ambush
  7. subside: to ‘sit’ under
  8. sedentary: of one who ‘sits’ often
  9. sedative: drug which causes one to ‘sit’ or settle down
  10. sediment: matter which ‘sits’ on the bottom of water
  11. sedimentary: type of rock formed from matter which has ‘sat’ on the bottom of a lake


  • dissident

    A dissident is someone who disagrees publicly with a government, especially in a country where this is not allowed.

  • assiduous

    An assiduous person works hard to ensure that something is done properly and completely.

  • insidious

    Something that is insidious is dangerous because it seems harmless or not important; nevertheless, over time it gradually develops the capacity to cause harm and damage.

  • residual

    Something that is residual is the part that still stays or remains after the main part is taken away.

  • subside

    When something subsides, it begins to go away, lessen, or decrease in some way.

  • resident

    A resident of a place—such as a town, apartment building, or country—lives there on a long-term basis.

  • assiduity

    great and constant diligence and attention

  • dissidence


  • preside

    act as president

  • president

    an executive officer of a firm or corporation

  • reside

    make one's home in a particular place or community

  • residence

    any address at which you dwell more than temporarily

  • residential

    used or designed for residence or limited to residences

  • residue

    matter that remains after something has been removed

  • subsidence

    an abatement in intensity or degree (as in the manifestations of a disease)

  • subsidize

    support through subsidies

  • subsidy

    a grant paid by a government to an enterprise that benefits the public

Related Word Sums

Differentiated vocabulary for your students is just a click away.