Latin Love, Vol II: nominare

The Latin root "nominare," meaning "to name," is related to those "onym" words: synonym, antonym, homonym! The "onym" root, meaning "name" comes from the Greek language, which explains the "y," the signature letter for words with Greek ancestry.

More Latin Love, Volume II lists:
cadere, fluere, iacere, and vertere!
ELA Common Core State Standard: "Use common, grade-appropriate Greek or Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word."

Activities for this list:

definitions & notes only words
  1. synonym
    a word that expresses the same or similar meaning
    In every war I have covered, cease-fire is a synonym for buying time to kill more civilians.New York Times (Jul 21, 2012)
    With "syn-" meaning "with, together, having the same function as" ("synthesis," "synthetic," synchronize"), and "-onym" meaning "name," it's clear to see why a "synonym" is a word meaning the same as another word. Think of synonyms as being like fraternal twins, not identical twins, since most words that are considered synonyms are closely related, but not exactly the same as each other. Every word has its own unique personality.
  2. homonym
    a word pronounced or spelled the same with another meaning
    In addition to these eighty review words, there is one review lesson containing homonyms.Ashbaugh, Ernest J.
    With "homo-" meaning "same" and "onym-" meaning "name," it's clear to see why words that sound or look the same but have different meanings. Elementary students spend lots of worksheet time learning to differentiate between "there" and "their."
  3. antonym
    a word that expresses an opposite meaning
    The direct antonym of cause is effect, while that of antecedent is consequent.Fernald, James Champlin
    With "ant-" being a shortened form of "anti-" meaning "against," and "onym-" meaning "name," it's clear to see that antonynms are opposites.
  4. anonymous
    having no known name or identity or known source
    Florida lottery winners cannot stay anonymous, but have up to 60 days to claim the prize.
    With "a-" meaning "not," and "onym-" meaning "name," it's clear to see that "anonymous" means "having no name." An anonymous person does, in fact, have a name, like anyone else, but the word is used when a person's identity is not known.
  5. eponymous
    relating to a name derived from a person
    The relationship between Frank Williams and his eponymous team is changing.
    Something that is "eponymous" is named after a person, so, in the example sentence, Frank Williams' team must be named, well, the Frank Williams Team. Wallmart is called Wallmart eponymously, after its founder, Sam Walton, as is its offshoot, Sam's Club.
  6. pseudonym
    a fictitious name used when performing a particular role
    Many other officers tweet under pseudonyms believing they can speak more freely as result.
    With "pseudo-" meaning "false," and "-onym," meaning "name," it's clear to see that a "pseudonym" is a false name. People use pseudonyms to protect their anonymity in sensitive situations, when they wish their true identities not to be known.
  7. nominal
    existing in name only
    Companies have got away with nominal good behaviour for years.
    To use the adjective "nominal" to describe something is to say that it is that thing in name only, not in actual fact: We call it whatever we call it, but the name is not its reality. For example, a person may be the nominal CEO of a company, but, in fact, wield no actual authority. There may be an agreement that someone else will actually make all the decisions.
  8. nominate
    propose as a candidate for some honor
    Drake is nominated three times for the top prize, video of the year.Seattle Times (May 14, 2013)
    To "nominate" someone is, simply, to put their name forward for some kind of office or honor. Movie stars are famous for saying "It's an honor just to be nominated," when another nominee wins the Academy Award. This statement has become a cliche, but it is, in fact, an honor just to be nominated.
  9. denomination
    a class of one kind of unit in a system of measures
    Like many Christian denominations, the United Methodist Church has struggled over issues of gay rights.
    With the prefix "de-" meaning, in this case, "from or of," and "nom-" meaning "name," it is clear to see that a "denomination" is any group that comes under a particular name. The word is often used to name sub-sets of Protestantism, such as the Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Episcopal, and Baptist denominations.
  10. denominator
    the divisor of a fraction
    The only common denominator is that they are surrounded by vineyards.
    Although the word "denominator" literally means the number under the line in a fraction, that is, the number that "names" the divisor of a fraction, the expression "lowest common denominator" has been extended into ordinary speech, referring to the broadest thing that members of a group have in common.
  11. onomatopoeia
    using words that imitate the sound they denote
    Mother Goose rhymes abound in these nonsense refrains, and they are often fine examples of onomatopoeia.Wells, Carolyn
    Despite its strange sound and weird spelling, the word "onomatopoeia" has a simple and fun meaning. Words that sound like their meanings are said to be onomatopoetic (the adjective form): "buzz," "whisper," :rustling," "bang," "boom," "whoosh," and "whistle" are some examples.

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