ἀ-

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See also: α- and ά-

Ancient Greek[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

  • (used before vowels) ἀν- (an-)

Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Indo-European *n̥- (not, un-) when followed by a consonant. Cognate with Latin in-, Old Irish in-, an-, Sanskrit अ- (a-). Akin to ἀν- (an-), νη- (nē-), νᾱ- (nā-) and νω- (nō-).

Prefix[edit]

ἀ- (a-)

  1. The alpha privativum, used to make words that have a sense opposite to the word (or stem) to which the prefix is attached. It is also known as privative a and alpha privative.
Descendants[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Prefix[edit]

ἀ- (a-)

  1. The alpha copulativum, used to express unity; e.g. in α- δελφός "brother" literally "from the same womb". Also known as copulative a and a athroistikon.

Etymology 3[edit]

Prefix[edit]

ἀ- (a-)

  1. The alpha intensivum, used to strengthen the force of compounds.

Etymology 4[edit]

Prefix[edit]

ἀ- (a-)

  1. The alpha euphonicum, used to soften pronunciation before two consonants.

References[edit]

  • Robert S. P. Beekes (2010) Etymological Dictionary of Greek, Leiden, Boston: Brill Academic Publishers, volume 1, page 1