Skip to Content

Writing With Prefixes: Greek Syn

Many of us are familiar with the Greek prefix epi-, meaning addition (think: epilogue), above, or upon, to expand our vocabulary. Expanding upon this idea, let’s look at syn-, a prefix meaning all together or united. Syn- descends from the Greek sun-, meaning with.

  • synchronous, noun: Two or more things happening at the same time.

The motor product line includes hysteresis and permanent magnet synchronous motors, stepper motors, DC brush motors and clock movements. –PR Newswire

  • syncope, noun: when one loses consciousness because of a drop in blood pressure.

Because vaccines may develop syncope, sometimes resulting in falling with injury, observation for 15 minutes after administration is recommended. —MarketWatch

  • synergy, noun: cooperative action of at least two organizations that yields something greater than the sum of the parts.

This sort of synergy created between a creative fan base and a group of players can be magical as we witnessed last night with Miguel Olivo. —Seattle Post Intelligencer

  • synodic, adjective: Relating to the conjunction of heavenly bodies.
    syntax, noun: Rules governing word order in grammatical sentences.

No relationship was found between domestic violence calls and either the anomalistic (apogee to apogee) or synodic (full moon to full moon) lunar cycles over the first 2 years, but more calls occurred at the third quarter during the 3rd year. —Journal of Psychology

  • syntax, noun: Rules governing word order in grammatical sentences.

Jim Dwyer, the New York Times columnist, movingly recounted how Ms. Ponsot was groping not only for vocabulary bur for order and placement and usage – in a word, for syntax. —America

A version of this article originally published on August 3, 2011, on The Writing Resource.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.