Cover image for Word parts dictionary : standard and reverse listings of prefixes, suffixes, roots and combining forms
Word parts dictionary : standard and reverse listings of prefixes, suffixes, roots and combining forms
Sheehan, Michael, 1939-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland, 2000.
Physical Description:
vii, 227 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PE1175 .S45 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Here at last is a one-stop word-reference book for language lovers. Anyone who has scoured a regular dictionary or thesaurus in search of an elusive word expressing a specific meaning will appreciate this versatile reference.This dictionary, split into three parts, presents the prefixes, suffixes, combining forms and roots that fit together to form words in English. Part I, an alphabetical listing of word parts with definitions, allows a reader to quickly locate the meaning of a known word part. Part II, the Finder, allows a user to start with a meaning or concept and then find word parts that express that meaning. Part III, also a reverse dictionary, organizes the word parts under broad headings: where a reader might consult Part II for word parts relating to Skull, Part III gives a complete listing of word parts pertaining to The Body.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Part one defines word parts. Part two allows the reader to work backward from well-known words to the word parts that express the concepts (for example, skill can be expressed by combining words with -craft, -ship, or techno-). In part three, word parts are organized by categories, such as "Animals," "Colors," and "Fear or Dislike of . . ."

Library Journal Review

The purpose of this work, which is meant to be used in conjunction with a standard dictionary and thesaurus, is to help retrieve words only dimly remembered, or[to] lead to specific new words which otherwise might never have been discovered. Sheehan (English, Olive-Harvey Coll.) divides his dictionary into three parts: the Dictionary, which contains the meanings of suffixes, prefixes, combining forms, and roots; the Finder, which lists concepts and word parts that express that concept or meaning; and the Categories, which contain words and their corresponding word parts arranged in clusters of meaning. The Dictionary and the Finder are the most interesting sections. In the Dictionary you learn, for instance, that the base pnig means choke; suffocate (pnigophobia). In the Finder you can look up dry and discover arid-, celo-, cherso-, and -sicc-; then you can turn to a standard English-language dictionary and find the various words beginning with these prefixes that can be used to convey dry. The Categories section is similar to the Finder but groups the words by 15 categories, e.g., Animals and Shapes. This is a somewhat specialized reference, unlikely to see a lot of use, yet students preparing for the verbal portion of the Graduate Record Exam will find it a treasure trove. Recommended for public libraries where there is an interest and for most academic libraries."Cynthia A. Johnson, Barnard Coll. Lib., New York (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

This unique dictionary focuses on parts (segments) of words: prefixes, suffixes, combining forms, and roots. Part 1 is in standard dictionary format with definitions and examples. It would have been useful to find the origins of word segments in this section. Part 2, the Finder, is a reverse dictionary, where the known idea or concept leads to the word segments that express that meaning; for example, the prefix for "artery" is "arterio" and the suffix "venous." Part 3, Categories, may be the most useful section from a reference standpoint. Groups of words are arranged in subject clusters, enabling discovery of word parts for such categories as animals, the body, colors, and phobias (fear of school, for example, is "didaskaleinophobia" or "scholionophobia"). A very specialized tool that will not see daily use, this work is clear and well executed. For libraries serving readers interested in the history and derivation of words, or who have an unquenchable thirst for language. K. F. Muther; emeritus, California State University, Sacramento

Table of Contents

Prefacep. 1
Part I Dictionaryp. 3
Part II Finder (Reverse Dictionary)p. 97
Part III Categoriesp. 181
Animalsp. 182
The Bodyp. 187
Colorsp. 193
Dimensionsp. 196
Directionsp. 197
Divinationp. 197
The Environmentp. 200
Fear or Dislike of ...p. 205
Foodp. 214
Locationp. 216
Negativesp. 217
Numbersp. 218
The Sensesp. 220
Shapesp. 222
Timep. 226