Thursday, September 10, 2009

Roots and prefixes--MAGN and HYPER

This week on our blog we will be talking about the Etymology of the prefixes magn-and hyper-. The prefix magn- comes from a Latin root, and has multiple examples. Here are a few words using the prefix magn- magnitude, magnify, and magnate. The prefix hyper- comes from a Greek root. Words like hyperextend, hyperdrive, and hypercritic all have hyper as its prefix, meaning exaggeration.

Magn is a prefix from the Latin roots that mean gigantic. An example that uses magn is magnitude, which means in great size or extent. “When I went to the carnival the magnitude of the rollercoaster frightened me.” This is a good example because magn means gigantic, and magnitude means great in size.
Another commonly used word is magnify and it means to make bigger. “During class our science teacher had to magnify the insect so we could see the details on its back more clearly.” This is a good example because it is referring to making something gigantic.
Magn used in magnate, a person with lots of power. “The military sergeant was a great magnate because he ruled the entire base.” The reason that this is such a good example is that having lots of power means you are gigantic.

Hyper is our final prefix. Hyper comes from a Greek root word meaning over and implies exaggeration. Hyper has also become a slang word that is used to describe someone who is very high strung or excitable. Many teens abuse this prefix and mistake it for its actual correct meaning. The prefix hyper in the word, hyper extended means, to extend a joint to where the angle is greater than normal. “The quarterback hyperextended his arm when he got tackled.” Hyperdrive is to be in a heightened state of extreme activity. “My brother is always in hyperdrive after drinking a Monster energy drink.” Being a hypercritic is a person who is excessively captiously critical. “When Obama won the presidency many talk show hosts were hypercritical because they were nervous about his inexperience.”

Magn and Hyper are two prefixes that are used commonly in our everyday language. There is a huge variety of words in the English language that use these prefixes, Magn and Hyper. It’s very helpful to be familiar with these prefixes because knowing these prefixes will give you a greater extent of understanding of words that use these prefixes. We hope that you have enjoyed our blog on Etymology! Please continue reading our blogs, there will be many more to come!

Written By: Dennise F, Michael Y, Jeffrey H & Cameron H.

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