Vocabulary Basics: Word Families - Page 1 (A-F)

This section of EnhanceMyVocabulary.com is all about learning new vocabulary by studying groups of words that share common roots

A significant aid to learning new vocabulary is to study groups of words that share common roots. Following is a list of such words preceded by their root.

In each set you'll find (1.) a list of fairly familiar words that embody the root and (2.) a list of less familiar words that embody it.

A Ag, act, ig (carry on, do, drive)
1. agent, agitate, agile, act, actor, actuate, exact, enact, reaction, counteract, transact, mitigate, navigate, prodigal, assay, essay;
2. agenda, pedagogue, synagogue, actuary, redact, castigate, litigation, exigency, ambiguous, variegated, cogent, cogitate.

Anim (life, breath)
1. Animosity, unanimous, magnanimity;
2. animate, animadvert, equanimity.

Annu (year)
1. Annual, annuity, anniversary, perennial, centennial, solemn;
2. superannuate, biennial, millennium.

Audi (hear)
1. Audit, auditor, auditorium, audience, inaudible, obey;
2. aurist, auricular, auscultation.

Auto (self)
1. Automatic, automobile, autocrat, autobiography;
2. autograph, autonomy.

B Burn, brun, brand (burn)
(1 and 2 combined) burn, burnish, brunette, brunt, bruin, brand, brandish, brandy, brown.

C Cad, cas, cid (fall)
1. cadence, decadent, case, casual, casualty, occasion, accident, incident, mischance, cheat;
2. casuistry, coincide, occidental, deciduous.

Cede, ceed, cess (go)
1. cede, recede, secede, concede, intercede, procedure, precedent, succeed, exceed, success, recess, concession, procession, intercession, abscess, ancestor, cease, decease;
2. antecedent, precedence, cessation, accessory, predecessor.

Ceive, ceit, cept, cip, cap(t) (take)
1. receive, deceive, perceive, deceit, conceit, receipt, reception, perception, inception, conception, interception, accept, except, precept, municipal, participate, anticipate, capable, capture, captivate, case (chest, covering), casement, incase, cash, cashier, chase, catch, prince, forceps, occupy;
2. receptacle, recipient, incipient, precipitate, accipiter, capacious, incapacitate.

Cant (song, sing)
1. Cant, descant, incantation, chant, enchant, chanticleer, accent, incentive;
2. canto, canticle, cantata, recant, chantry, chanson, precentor.

Cent (one hundred)
1. Cent, per cent, century, centennial;
2. centenary, centime, centurion, centimeter, centigrade.

Chron (time)
1. Chronic, chronological, chronicle;
2. chronometer, synchronize, anachronism.

Corp (body)
1. Corps, corpse, corporal, corpulent, corporation, incorporate;
2. corpus, habeas corpus, corporeal, corpuscle, Corpus Christi.

Cred (believe)
(1 and 2 combined)
Creed, credulous, credential, credit, accredit, discredit, incredible.

Cresc (grow, increase)
1. Crescent, increase, decrease, concrete, recruit, accrue, crew;
2. crescendo, excrescence, accretion, increment.

Cura (care)
1. Cure, secure, procure, sinecure, curious, inaccurate;
2. curate, curator.

Cide, cis(e) (cut, kill)
1. decide, suicide, homicide, concise, precise, decisive, incision, scissors, chisel, cement;
2. patricide, fratricide, infanticide, regicide, germicide, excision, circumcision, incisors, cesura.

D Dic, dict (speak, say)
1. dedicate, vindicate, indication, predicament, predict, addict, verdict, indict, dictionary, dictation, jurisdiction, vindictive, contradiction, benediction, ditto, condition;
2. abdicate, adjudicate, juridical, diction, dictum, dictator, dictaphone, dictograph, edict, interdict, valedictory, malediction, ditty, indite, ipse dixit, on dit.

dign (worthy)
(1 and 2 combined)
Indignity, indignation, undignified, condign, deign, dainty.

Duce, duct (lead)
1. induce, reduce, traduce, seduce, introduce, reproduce, education, deduct, product, production, reduction, conduct, conductor, abduct, subdue;
2. educe, adduce, superinduce, conducive, ducat, duct, ductile, induction, aqueduct, viaduct, conduit, duke, duchy.

Dura (hard)
1. Durable, endure, during, duration, obdurate;
2. durance, duress, indurate, perdurable.

E Error (wander)
1. error, erroneous, erratic, errand;
2. errata, knight errant, arrant knave, aberration.

F Fact, fic(e), fy, fect, feat, feit (make, do)
1. fact, factory, faction, manufacture, satisfaction, suffice, sacrifice, office, difficult, pacific, terrific, significant, fortification, magnificent, artificial, beneficial, verify, simplify, stupefy, certify, dignify, glorify, falsify, beautify, justify, infect, perfect, effect, affection, defective, feat, defeat, feature, feasible, forfeit, surfeit, counterfeit, affair, fashion;
2. factor, factotum, malefaction, benefaction, putrefaction, facile, facsimile, faculty, certificate, edifice, efficacy, prolific, deficient, proficient, artifice, artificer, beneficiary, versification, unification, exemplification, deify, petrify, rectify, amplify, fructify, liquefy, disaffect, refection, comfit, pontiff, ipso facto, de facto, ex post facto, au fait, fait accompli.

Fer (bear, carry)
1. transfer, prefer, proffer, suffer, confer, offer, referee, deference, inference, indifferent, ferry, fertile;
2. referendum, Lucifer, circumference, vociferate, auriferous, coniferous, pestiferous.

Fide (trust, believe, have faith)
1. fidelity, confide, confident, diffident, infidel, perfidious, bona fide, defiance, affiance;
2. fiduciary, affidavit, fiance, auto da fe.

Fin (end)
1. Finite, infinite, define, definite, confine, final, in fine, unfinished;
2. definitive, infinitesimal.

Flex (bend)
1. Flexibility, inflexible, deflect, inflection, reflection, reflex;
2. circumflex, genuflection.

Fluo (water)
1. Fluent, affluent, influence, influenza, superfluous, fluid, influx, flush (rush of water), fluctuate;
2. confluent, mellifluous, flux, reflux, effluvium, flume.

Fort (strong)
1. Fort, forte, effort, comfort, fortitude, fortify, fortress;
2. aqua fortis, pianoforte.

Fract (break, broken)
1. Fraction, infraction, fracture, fragility, fragment, suffrage, frail, infringe;
2. diffract, refractory, frangible.

Fug (flee)
(1 and 2 combined)
Fugitive, fugue, refuge, subterfuge, centrifugal.

Fun (rope)
1. Refund, confound, foundry, confuse, suffuse, profuse, refuse, diffuse;
2. fusion, effusion, transfuse.

Go to the next page of Word Families, G-P or skip ahead to the last page of Word Families, R-V.

Return to EnhanceMyVocabulary.com's Vocabulary Basics & Parts of Speech page.

Editor's note: This section of EnhanceMyVocabulary.com is excerpted and adapted from Project Gutenberg's The Century Vocabulary Builder by Creever and Bachelor.

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