meaning of A-

A- meaning in Medical Dictionary

Prefix indicating the lack or exhaustion of one thing: as an example, aphagia (refusing to eat) or aphonia (voiceless). The relevant prefix an- is usually used before a vowel, such as anemia (without blood) and anoxia (without oxygen).


A- meaning in Etymology Dictionary

in local (produced by Old English) words, it mostly represents Old English an "on" (see a (2)), as with live, asleep, abroad, afoot, etc., forming adjectives and adverbs from nouns; but it also can be center English of, such as anew, informed (1590s); or a diminished kind of Old English past participle prefix ge-, like in aware; and/or Old English intensive a-, like in arise, awake, ashame, marking a verb as momentary, a single event. In words from Romanic languages, often it signifies Latin ad- "to, at."[I]t normally occurred that every these a- prefixes had been at length confusedly lumped together in concept, and the resultant a- viewed as vaguely intensive, rhetorical, euphonic, if not archaic, and wholly otiose. [OED]

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  • prefix meaning "not," from Latin a-, short for ab "away from" (like in avert); see ab-.
  • prefix meaning "not," from Greek a-, an- "not," from PIE root *ne "not" (see un-).

A- meaning in General Dictionary

A, as a prefix to English terms, comes from numerous resources. (1) It regularly indicates on or perhaps in (from an, a forms of AS. on), denoting circumstances, as with afoot, by foot, abed, amiss, asleep, aground, aloft, away (AS. onweg), and analogically, ablaze, atremble, an such like. (2) AS. of down, from, as in adown (AS. ofd/ne from the dun or slope). (3) AS. a- (Goth. us-, ur-, Ger. er-), generally providing an intensive power, and sometimes the feeling of away, on, straight back, such as arise, abide, ago. (4) Old English y- or i- (corrupted from the AS. inseparable particle ge-, cognate with OHG. ga-, gi-, Goth. ga-), which, as a prefix, made no crucial addition on meaning, as in mindful. (5) French a (L. ad to), such as abase, attain. (6) L. a, ab, abs, from, like in avert. (7) Greek insep. prefix / without, or privative, not, as with abyss, atheist; akin to E. un-.


A- meaning in General Dictionary

A, as a prefix to English terms, hails from various resources. (1) It frequently indicates on or in (from an, a forms of AS. on), denoting circumstances, as in afoot, by walking, abed, amiss, asleep, aground, aloft, away (like. onweg), and analogically, ablaze, atremble, etc. (2) AS. of down, from, as in adown (AS. ofd/ne off the dun or hill). (3) like. a- (Goth. us-, ur-, Ger. er-), frequently offering an intensive force, and quite often the feeling of away, on, back, as with arise, abide, ago. (4) Old English y- or i- (corrupted from the AS. inseparable particle ge-, cognate with OHG. ga-, gi-, Goth. ga-), which, as a prefix, made no crucial inclusion on definition, as with conscious. (5) French a (L. advertising to), as in abase, attain. (6) L. a, ab, abs, from, like in avert. (7) Greek insep. prefix / without, or privative, not, as with abyss, atheist; comparable to E. un-.


Sentence Examples with the word A-

By distillation over lime, the methyl group is removed from the pyridine ring, and the resulting a- pyridyl-Nmethylpyrrol gives i-nicotine on reduction.

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