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Free TOEFL Exercises - Advanced English Vocabulary - Roots

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The following is a list of roots for English vocabulary. The list is displayed so that the root with its definition is shown first, then the source of the root (Latin, Greek, etc.) with the source word's definition, and then last is an example of the root as used in a word and the word's definition. The sample words are linked to additional words with the same root.



INDEX: A B C D E F G H J L M N O P Q R S T U V

A

  • act, ag:do, act, drive
    • Latin, agere: to drive, lead, act, do
    • active (adjective): moving about
  • am, ami:love, like
    • Latin, amare: to love
    • amorous (adjective): loving
  • anim:mind, life, spirit, anger
    • Latin, animus: spirit
    • animal (noun): a living creature
  • annu, enni:yearly
    • Latin, annuus: yearly
    • annual (adjective): yearly
  • auc, aug, aut:to originate, to increase
    • Latin, augere: to originate, increase
    • augment (verb): to increase, to add to
  • aud, audit, aur:hear
    • Latin, audire: to hear
    • audible (adjective): can be heard

B

  • bene, ben:good, well, gentle
    • Latin, bene: good
    • benign (adjective): harmless, mild, gentle
  • bio, bi:life
    • Greek, bios: life
    • biography (noun): a book written about a person's life
  • bibli, biblio:book
    • Greek, biblion: book
    • bibliophile (noun): a person who likes or collects books
  • brev:short
    • Latin, brevis: short
    • abbreviate (verb): to shorten

C

  • cad, cap, cas, ceiv, cept, cid:to take, to seize, to hold
    • Latin, capere: to seize
    • receive (verb): to take in, to acquire
  • ceas, cede, ceed, cess:go, yield
    • Latin, cedere: to go
    • exceed (verb): to go beyond a limit, to be greater than
  • chron:time
    • Greek, khronos: time
    • chronological (adjective): arranged in order of time or sequence
  • clam, claim:shout
    • Latin, clamare: to call out, shout
    • clamor (verb): to make noise
  • cogn, gnos:know to know
    • Latin, cognoscere: to know
    • recognize (verb): to know, to identify
  • corp:body
    • Latin, corpus: body
    • corporate (adjective): formed into a body or association, united in one group
  • cre, cresc, cret:grow
    • Latin, crescere: to grow
    • create (verb): to originate, to produce through imagination
  • cred:trust, believe
    • Latin, credere: to believe
    • incredible (adjective): unbelievable
  • cour, cur, curr, curs:run, course
    • Latin, currere: run
    • occur (verb): to happen, to come to mind

D

  • dic, dict, dit:say, speak
    • Latin, dicere: to say
    • indicate (verb): to show, to point out
  • doc, doct:teach, prove
    • Latin, docere: to teach
    • docile (adjective): obedient, easily taught
  • dog, dox:thought, idea
    • Greek, dokein: seem, think
    • dogma (noun): an established opinion
  • dec, dign:suitable
    • Latin, decere: to be suitable
    • decent (adjective): conforming to standards, suitable, good
  • duc, duct**:lead
    • Latin, ducere: to draw or lead
    • conduct (verb): to lead or guide
      (noun) - a person's behavior
    • ** ducere is one of the most prolific sources of English words

E

  • ev, et:time, age
    • Latin, aevum: lifetime
    • medieval (adjective): related to the Middle Ages (500 - 1500 AD)

F

  • fac, fact, fec, fic, fas, fea:make do, do
    • Latin, facere - make, do
    • difficult (noun): hard to do, troublesome
  • fer:bear, carry
    • Latin, ferre: bear, carry
    • infer (verb): to come to a conclusion from looking at facts, to guess
  • fict, feign, fain:shape, make, fashion
    • Latin, fingere: shape, make
    • fiction (noun): something produced from imagination, an invented story
  • fid:belief, faith
    • Latin, fidere: to trust
    • confide (verb): to trust, to trust another person with a secret
  • fig:shape, form
    • Latin, figura: form, shape, figure
    • figurem (noun): shape, pattern, drawing
      (verb) - decide, plan, decipher
  • flu, fluct, flux:flow
    • Latin, fluere: to flow
    • fluid (adjective): capable of flowing, a smooth easy style
      (noun) - a liquid
  • form:shape
    • Latin, forma: beauty, shape, form
    • format (noun): the shape and size of something
  • fract, frag, frai:break
    • Latin, frangere: to break
    • frail (adjective): easily broken, not strong, weak

G

  • gen, gin:to give birth, kind
    • Greek, genus: birth
    • generate (verb): to produce, to create
  • geo:earth
    • Greek, ge: earth
    • geography (noun): a science that describes the earth's surface
  • gor:to gather, to bring together
    • Greek, ageirin: to gather
    • category (noun): a class or set in which a thing is placed
  • grad, gress, gree:step, go, move
    • Latin, gradus: step
    • degree (noun): a step or stage in a process
  • graph, graf:write, draw
    • Greek, graphein: write, scratch, carve
    • graphic (adjective): written, drawn, vividly shown

H

  • her, hes:to stick
    • Latin, haerere: to stick
    • adhere (verb): to stick

J

  • jac, ject, jet:to throw
    • Latin, jacere: to throw, to lie
    • reject (verb): to throw out, unwilling to accept
  • jug, junct, just:to join
    • Latin, jungere: to join
    • junction (noun): a place at which two things join

L

  • lex, leag, leg:law
    • Latin, lex: law
    • legal (adjective): based on law
  • lect, leg, lig:choose, gather, select, read
    • Latin, legere: to choose
    • collect (verb): to gather, to bring together
  • loc:place, area
    • Latin, locare: to place
    • location (noun): a place, a position occupied
  • log:say, speech, word, reason, study
    • Greek, logos: speech, word, reason
    • logic (noun): the study of reason, reasoning
  • luc, lum, lust:light
    • Latin, lucare: shine
    • Latin, lumen: light
    • Latin, lustrare: light-up
    • translucent (adjective): permitting some light to come through

M

  • man:hand, make, do
    • Latin, manus: hand
    • manage (verb): to handle with skill, to be able to do
  • mem:recall, remember
    • Latin, memor: mindful
    • memory (noun): the ability to recall or to bring to mind
  • ment:mind
    • Latin, mens: mind
    • mental (adjective): related to the mind
  • min:little, small
    • Latin, minuere: to lessen
    • minor (adjective): less important, lesser
  • mit, miss: send
    • Latin, mittere: put, send
    • admit (verb): to accept, to allow entry
  • mob, mov, mot:move
    • Latin, movere: move
    • motion (noun): act of moving, action

N

  • nasc, nat, gnant, nai:to be born
    • Latin, nasci to be born
    • nascent (adjective) - just born
  • nom, nym:name
    • Latin, nomen: name
    • nominate (verb): to name for office
  • nov:new
    • latin, novus: new
    • novice (noun): a beginner or newcomer

O

  • oper:work
    • Latin, opus: work
    • operate (verb): to work, to perform

P

  • pat, pass: feel, suffer
    • Latin, pati: suffer
    • passion (noun): a strong feeling or emotion
  • path:feel
    • Greek, pathos: feeling
    • sympathy (noun): sharing another person's feelings
  • ped:foot
    • Latin, pes: foot
    • impede (verb): to hinder, to slow down
  • pod:foot
    • Greek, pous: foot
    • podium (noun): a platform, an area raised above the surrounding ground
  • pel, puls:drive, push
    • Latin, pellere: to drive, push, beat
    • repel (verb): to drive away or push back
  • pend, pond:to hang, weigh
    • Latin, pendere: to hang, to weigh
    • append (verb): to add or correct
  • phan, phas, phen, fan, phant, fant:show, make visible
    • Greek, phainein: show
    • phantom (noun): something seen but having no physical existence, a ghost
  • phil:love
    • Greek, philos: loving
    • philosopher (noun): a person who seeks (loves) wisdom
  • phon:sound
    • Greek, phone: voice, sound
    • phonetic (adjective): related to speech sounds
  • pict:paint, show, draw
    • Latin, pingere: to paint
    • picture (verb): to paint or draw
  • port:carry
    • Latin, portare: carry
    • import (verb): to bring in from a foreign country
  • pli, ply:fold
    • Latin, plicare: fold
    • reply (verb): to respond, to answer
  • pon, pos: put, place
    • Latin, ponere: to lay down, put, place
    • postpone (verb): to put off to a later time
  • psych:mind
    • Greek, psukhe: soul, spirit
    • psychology (noun): study of how the mind works

Q

  • quir, quis, quest, quer:seek, ask
    • Latin, quaerere: seek, ask
    • query (verb): to ask questions

R

  • rupt:break
    • Latin, rumpere: break
    • rupture (verb): to break or burst

S

  • sci, scio:to know
    • Latin, scire: to know
    • conscious (adjective): aware, having knowledge of oneself
  • scrib, scrip:write
    • Latin, scribere: to write
    • script (noun): handwriting, something written
  • sent, sens:feel, think
    • Latin, sentire: feel
    • sentiment (noun): a thought prompted by feeling
  • sequ, secut, sue:follow
    • Latin, sequi: to follow
    • sequence (noun): a continuous series
  • sist:to withstand, make up
    • Latin, sistere: to make a stand
    • insist (verb): to be firm about something needed, to demand
  • soci:to join, companions
    • Latin, sociare, socius: to join, a companion
    • sociable (adjective): inclined to seek friendship, companionship
  • sol:alone
    • Latin, solus: alone, single
    • solitary (adjective): being alone
  • solv, solu, solut:loosen, explain
    • Latin, solvere: too loosen, release
    • solve (verb): to find an answer
  • spec, spi, spic, spect:look
    • Latin, specere: look, look at
    • spectator (noun): a person who watches
  • spir:breath, soul
    • Latin, spirare: breathe
    • respiration (noun): breathing
  • stab, stat:stand
    • Latin, stare: to stand
    • stature (noun) - height of a standing body, importance of position
  • strain, strict, string, stige:bind, pull
    • Latin, stringere: to bind or pull tight
    • constrict (verb) - to squeeze, to make narrow
  • stru, struct, stroy:build
    • Latin, struere: to build
    • destroy (verb): to ruin, to pull down

T

  • tact, tang, tig, ting:touch
    • Latin, tangere: to touch
    • tactile (adjective): related to the sense of touch
  • tele:far away
    • Greek, telos: end
    • telepathy (noun): communication from one mind to another without verbal or written communication
  • tend, tens:stretch
    • Latin, tendere: to stretch
    • contend (verb): to strive or reach for, to argue
  • tain, ten, tent, tin:hold, keep, have
    • Latin, tenere: to hold
    • retain (verb): to keep, to hold in place
  • term:end, boundary, limit
    • Latin, terminusm: limit, boundary
    • exterminate (verb): to kill off, to get rid of
  • terr:earth
    • Latin, terra: earth
    • territory (noun): area of land
  • test:see, witness
    • Latin, testis: witness
    • attest (verb): to provide proof, to say something is true
  • therm:heat
    • Greek, therme: heat
    • thermometer (noun): a device for measuring heat
  • tor, tors, tort:twist
    • Latin, torquere: twist
    • torsion (noun): twisting of the body
  • tract, trai, treat:pull, draw
    • Latin, trahere: pull
    • attract (verb): to draw toward, to arouse interest

U

  • uni:one
    • Latin, unus: one
    • unite (verb): to make one, to join together

V

  • vac:empty
    • Latin, vacare: to be empty
    • vacant (adjective): empty, not occupied
  • ven, vent:come
    • Latin, venire: to come
    • convene (verb): to assemble, to come together
  • ver:true
    • Latin, venus: true
    • verify (verb): to confirm that something is true
  • verb, verv:word
    • Latin, verbum: word
    • verbalize (verb): to express in words, to put into words
  • vers, vert:turn,change
    • Latin, versare: to turn
    • versatile (adjective): capable of changing or adapting, useful
  • vid, vie, vis:see
    • Latin, videre: to see; Latin, videre: to separate
    • visible (adjective): able to be seen
    • divide (verb): to separate
  • vit, viv:live
    • Latin, vivere: to live
    • vital (adjective) - necessary for life
  • voc, voke:call
    • Latin, vocare: call, voice
    • vocal (adjective): spoken or uttered by the voice
  • volv, volt, vol:roll, turn
    • Latin, volvere: to roll, turn
    • revolve (verb): to turn around

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