a-, ab-, abs-
(Latin: prefix; from, away, away from)
This prefix is normally used with elements of Latin and French origins (abs- usually joins elements beginning with c, q, or t).
The form ab- is regularly used before all vowels and h; and it becomes a- before the consonants m, p, and v. The prefix apo- has similar meanings.
This list is a very small sample of the multitudes of a-, ab-, abs- prefixes that are available in dictionaries and those in this unit are only meant to present a few examples.
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2. A measure of the extent to which a substance transmits light or other electromagnetic radiations: Absorbance varies with factors, such as wavelength, solution concentration, and path length.
2. An agent that causes the soaking up or the taking in of liquids by solids: Adding the right kind of absorbefacient to the spill on the garage floor made it easier to clean up the mess.
2. A substance or product that can soak up liquids or gases: Are there differences in the absorbencies of salt water versus unsalted water for gases?
2. A product or substance which can collect liquids or gases: The new powder-like substance is a great absorbent when cleaning up the oils and grease at the auto mechanic's work shop.
2. Any substance that takes in fluids through its sensible or insensible porosity; applied in a special sense in medicine to such substances as chalk or magnesia that take in the acidity of the stomach: Certain forms of magnesium can work as an absorbent when administered as a laxative.
2. The material that readily gathers photons to generate charge carriers which are the free electrons or holes: The instructor tried to explain the different materials that could be used as absorbers.
2. The taking up of light or of its rays by black or colored rays: The absorption of the illumination by the black cloth seemed to be adequate.
3. The retention of radiant heat by the body, causing a rise in body temperature: Stanley was feeling quite hot which was caused by the absorption of the heat from the sun when he was at the beach.
4. The reduction in intensity of an X-ray photon as it passes through a substance or a beam of light as it passes through a solution which is used in clinical photometry as well as nuclear methods: At the laboratory the technicians were able to monitor the absorption of the electromagnetic energy as it passed through the blue solution.
5. The passage of a substance through some surface of the body into body fluids and tissues, such as the passage of ether through the respiratory epithelium of the lungs into the blood during anesthesia, or the passage of oil of wintergreen through the skin, which is the result of several processes like diffusion, filtration, and osmosis: Rodney, the anesthesiologist, frequently checked the level of absorption of the ether during the surgery.
6. The process by which a liquid or gas is drawn into the permeable pores of a solid material: The clean gauze bandage slowed the absorption of the blood from the wound.
7. In physiology, the passage of substances across and into tissues, such as the passage of digested food molecules into intestinal cells or the passage of liquid into kidney tubules: The various types of medical absorptions include agglutinin absorption, cutaneous absorption, external absorption, intestinal absorption, parenteral absorption, and pathological absorption.
2. To withhold from voting for or against something: Seven members casted ballots for the proposal, three were against it, and four abstained.
3. To forebear or to voluntarily do without something by refraining from doing it: It is a struggle to abstain from eating a large slice of chocolate birthday cake.
4. Etymology: from Latin abs-, "from" + tenere, "to hold".
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2. An individual who practices self-denial as a religious discipline: The spiritual hermit on the mountain was renowned as an abstainer from eating meat.
Abstemious people restrict themselves to the bare necessities of life and prefer an austere, simple, or unassuming lifestyle.2. Etymology: abs-, ab-, "from, away from" + temetum, "intoxicating drink, mead, wine".