Back formation is the creation of a new word by removing parts that appear to be suffixes. Back formation fits into the category of retronyms
Basically this means that by chopping off the beginning or end of a word, another word is formed. Often, these words gain acceptance into common English because English is a living language
. They, although accepted, may not be proper English
. In fact, back formation commonly occurs when one isn't aware of a singular form. For example, orientate was created (and is used) when orient already existed.
In the Chatterbox, we ran into an example with the usage of kudos
and kudo. The word kudos is singular (At least according to the Greeks
, who invented the root word kydos). Using the word as both plural and singular has caused a claim that kudo
is the singular form. This is not proper usage, but even dictionaries
are starting to pick this up.
pease created pea by removing -se
isolated created isolate by removing -d
sightseeing created sightsee by removing -ing
orientation created orientate by removing -ion
An E2 Quest: Writeup Redemption submission.
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