Common Prefixes in English with Meaning And Examples

Prefixes are letters which we add to the beginning of a word to make a new word with a different meaning. Prefixes can, for example, create a new word opposite in meaning to the word the prefix is attached to. The list below shows common prefixes in English that you should know. 

Common Prefixes in English

a-, an-

  • Meaning: without, lack of, not
  • Example: amoral, acellular, abyss, achromatic, anhydrous

ante-

  • Meaning: before, earlier, in front of
  • Example: antecedent, antedate, antemeridian, anterior

anti-

  • Meaning: against, opposite of
  • Example: anticlimax. antiaircraft, antiseptic, antibody

auto-

  • Meaning: self, same
  • Example: autopilot, autobiography, automobile, autofocus

circum-

  • Meaning: around, about
  • Example: circumvent, circumnavigate, circumscribe

co-

  • Meaning: with, together
  • Example: co-pilot, co-worker, co-exist, co-author

com-, con-

  • Meaning: together, with
  • Example: companion, commingle, contact, concentrate

contra-, contro-

  • Meaning: against, opposite
  • Example: contradict, contrast, contrary, controversy

de-

  • Meaning: down, off, away from
  • Example: devalue, deactivate, debug, degrade, deduce

dis-

  • Meaning: not, apart, away
  • Example: disappear, disagreeable, disbar, dissect

en-

  • Meaning: put into, cover with
  • Example: enclose, entangle, enslave, encase

ex-

  • Meaning: out of, from, former
  • Example: extract, exhale, excavate, ex-president

extra-

  • Meaning: beyond, outside, more than
  • Example: extracurricular, extramarital, extravagant

hetero-

  • Meaning: different, other
  • Example: heterosexual, heterodox, heterogeneous

homo-, homeo-

  • Meaning: same, alike
  • Example: homonym, homophone, homeostasis, homosexual

hyper-

  • Meaning: over, more, beyond
  • Example: hyperactive, hypersensitive, hypercritical

il-, im-, in-, ir-

  • Meaning: not, without
  • Example: illegal, immoral, inconsiderate, irresponsible

inter-

  • Meaning: between, among
  • Example: intersect, interstellar, intervene, interpenetrate

intra-, intro-

  • Meaning: within, inside
  • Example: intravenous, intragalactic, introvert

macro-

  • Meaning: large, prominent
  • Example: macroeconomics, macrostructure, macrocosm

micro-

  • Meaning: very small
  • Example: microscope, microcosm, microbe

mono-

  • Meaning: one, single, alone
  • Example: monocle, monologue, monogamy, monotony

non-

  • Meaning: not, without
  • Example: nonentity, nonaggressive, nonessential, nonfiction

omni-

  • Meaning: all, every
  • Example: omniscient, omnivorous, omniscient, omnidirectional

post-

  • Meaning: after, behind
  • Example: postmortem, posterior, postscript, postoperative

pre-, pro-

  • Meaning: before, forward
  • Example: precede, predict, project, prologue

sub-

  • Meaning: under, lower
  • Example: submarine, subsidiary, substandard

sym-, syn-

  • Meaning: same time, together
  • Example: symmetry, symposium, synchronize, synapse

tele-

  • Meaning: from or over a distance
  • Example: telecommunications, telemedicine, television, telephone

trans-

  • Meaning: across, beyond, through
  • Example: transmit, transaction, translation, transfer

tri-

  • Meaning: three, every third
  • Example: tricycle, trimester, triangle, triathlon

un-

  • Meaning: not, lacking, opposite of
  • Example: unfinished, unskilled, ungraceful, unfriendly

uni-

  • Meaning: one, single
  • Example: unicorn, unicellular, unicycle, unilateral

up-

  • Meaning: to the top or north, higher/better
  • Example: upbeat, updo, upgrade, upload, uphill, upstage, upscale, up-tempo

Common Prefixes | Infographic

PrefixesPrefixesPrefixes

Common Prefixes in English with Meaning And Examples 1

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of
trackback

[…] is the list of common prefixes in English with their […]