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.

You can greatly expand your word knowledge in this
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abstractiveness (s) (noun) (no plural)
A process in which higher conceptions, or the time when someone creates a new idea, are derived from the usage and classification of "real" or "concrete" ideas about things or groups of things that are derived from specific instances or occurrences or by other methods: The Board of Directors were presenting investment ideas that were more in the realm of abstractiveness than of practical concepts.
abstractly (adverb); more abstractly, most abstractly
1. Regarding how something is disassociated or unconnected from any specific instance: Roy abstractly communicated his feelings regarding the breakup of his marriage.
2. Pertaining to how a reference to something is difficult to understand: Lynn had difficulty comprehending the doctor's abstractly presented diagnosis of her illness.
abstractness (s) (noun), abstractnesses (pl)
That which is neither physical nor consisting of matter: Benjamin's abstractness was evidently a result of his being in a state of contemplation and not being connected with anything concrete or solid.
abstrude (verb), abstrudes; abstruded; abstruding
To thrust, to push forcefully, or to pull away: Using the oars, Adam abstruded his boat away from the dock and rowed out onto the lake.
abstruse (adjective); more abstruse, most abstruse
1. Relating to something which is concealed or hidden; complex, obscure, and difficult to understand: The poetry of Harry Philips was often described as abstruse and so it was often relegated to the bottom shelf of many libraries.
2. Pertaining to something difficult to penetrate; incomprehensible to one of ordinary understanding or knowledge: Some scientists may understand Einstein's theory of relativity, however for most nonscientists, it continues to be an abstruse collection of surrealistic or unrealistic ideas.
3. Etymology: from Latin abstrusus, past participle of abstrudere, "conceal"; literally, "to thrust away", from ab-, "away" + trudere "to thrust, to push".
Complex and so very hard to understand.
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Too difficult to know what is being presented.
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Difficult or too complex to comprehend.
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Remote from apprehension.
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abstrusely (adverb); more abstrusely, most abstrusely
1. Pertaining to how something is difficult to understand: Bruce's essay about climate changes was abstrusely difficult to comprehend except by an expert weather specialist.
2. Regarding how something is done in a concealed way: Sally abstrusely designed secret pockets in the jacket she was making so the one who wore it could hide cash and small valuables without anyone else being aware of it.
3. Concerning how a subject matter is difficult to be comprehended or understood, as opposed to what is obvious: Jeremy's theory seems to be that the more abstrusely he writes the more famous he will become.
abstruseness (s) (noun), abstrusenesses (pl)
1. The condition of being inexplicit and hard to perceive; obscureness: The abstruseness of the economist when he was speaking at the forum about the economic situation was confusing his audience.
2. Knowledge that is obscure and little known; a matter that is difficult to understand; profoundity; The university students were confused by the professor's abstrusenesses in some of his lectures about philosophical and religious beliefs and practices.
absurd (adjective); more absurd, most absurd
1. Ridiculous because of being irrational, incongruous, or illogical: Louis thought it was an absurd idea to go to the movie so late.
2. Pertaining to something that lacks any meaning that would give purpose to life: The young woman's absurd lifestyle seemed pointless and worrisome to her parents.
3. Concerning a condition of living in a meaningless universe where life has no purpose, especially as a concept in some twentieth-century philosophical movements: Jeremy, the university student, was determined to study the seemingly absurd lives of famous poets who had died young.
4. Relating to, or manifesting, the view that there is no order or value in human life or in the universe: The absurd theory about the meaninglessness of mortal existence did not appeal to James when he was attending the special lecture presented by a religious leader.
5. Descriptive of incongruity, senselessness; pertaining to a state of fabrication or untruth; unreasonable as to be laughable or ridiculous: The absurd quality of the theater production seemed to confuse the critics who were not sure if the drama was serious or just a joke.

Something is absurd when it is contrary to the first principles of reasoning. The statement that a part of something is greater than the whole is considered to be absurd.

Being monstrous and preposterous both refer to what is overwhelmingly absurd.

So clearly unreasonable or untrue as to be ridiculous.
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Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
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absurdism (s) (noun), absurdisms (pl)
1. The idea or philosophy that humans exist in a chaotic or purposeless universe: Many people who subscribed to the belief called absurdism became disillusioned by reality later in their lives.
2. An act or instance of the ridiculous: The absurdisms which were portrayed on the stage upset the audience who expected a better production from the director and actors.
absurdist (adjective) (not comparable)
1. Pertaining to the belief that human existence and behavior are meaningless; unreasonable or impossible to believe: Dr. Smith, the scientist, could not present an acceptable rationale for his absurdist statements regarding the violence of people in different societies.
2. A reference to that which is inconsistent with reason, logic, or common sense: The absurdist student told his teacher that the dog had eaten his homework.
absurdist (s) (noun), absurdists (pl)
1. Someone who considers something as being extremely silly, unreasonable, or foolish: Ted's lawyer claimed that the charges made by the absurdist in the police department were obviously unfounded because Ted was in another country when the crime was committed.
2. A person who acts or presents characteristics of being ridiculous: Mr. Potter, the politician, was described by some people as another in a series of absurdists who were candidates for mayor.
absurdity (s) (noun), absurdities (pl)
1. Ridiculousness because of being irrational, incongruous, or illogical: Absurdities of life in the city were depicted on the new mural painted on the wall of the city hall.
2. Anything that is considered to be lacking in order and meaning: For some students, mathematics is an absurdity and is an illogical process.
absurdness (s) (noun), absurdnesses (pl)
1. A message whose content is at variance with reason: The absurdness of the letter from the bank was confusing to Joan's uncle.
2. Descriptive of something ridiculously unreasonable, unsound, or incongruous: Mr. Anderson, the drama teacher, commented about the absurdness of the new play which was being developed by the students in his class.
abundance (s) (noun), abundances (pl)
1. A more than plentiful quantity of something: An abundance of wealth is a great amount of cash.
2. A lifestyle with more than adequate material provisions: Barry's family has abundances of different homes around the world as well as all of the luxuries that can be obtained for them.
3. A fullness of spirit that overflows: The sermon by the preacher was filled with an abundance of goodwill and kindness.
4. The extent to which an element is present in the earth or in a rock: There is a rumor of an abundance of minerals hidden in the abandoned mine.
5. The proportion of one isotope of an element, expressed by number of atoms, to the total quantity of the element: Mr. Young, the chemistry teacher, urged his classes to study and to understand the abundance factors of the chemical components.
6. Etymology: nothing suggests great abundance more vividly than overflowing waves; and that is the literal meaning of the word abundance.

In Latin, unda means "wave", poetically "sea". The Romans combined ab, "from", and unda into the word abundare, "to overflow"; literally, "to come from the waves" or "from the sea"; applied to anything very plentiful.

The stem of abundare resulted in the English verb "to abound", and a derivative provided the noun abundance. Inundate, "to flood", also comes from unda, as does undulate, "to move like the waves".

abundancy (s) (noun), abundancies (pl)
That which is plentiful, abounding, ample, and copious: The city has an abundancy of good restaurants.