Harry: Hello, guys! Welcome to Grammar Zone!
My friend Alex is Spanish. And he is always disappointed by his attempts to speak English.
Once a waiter in London misunderstood what he wanted and instead of beetroots brought him potatoes. He disliked potatoes but when he asked a waiter to replace them with beetroots, the waiter smiled, and returned with a plate of tomatoes.
Then my friend complained that they had undercooked the dish and disagreed to pay the bill. He accused the waiter of overcharging him.
It was just my friend’s awful English again!
Today he applied with another question to us:
I hope you’re all fine there. Thanks for your always helpful replies.
Could you help me with another question today? I often feel confused when dealing with words like undercook, dislike, misunderstand.
I know their primary meaning, but when they’re used with those prefixes, I’m hopeless!
How does one know what prefix to add to a word?
Bad news, Alex! One doesn't know, one has to learn it!
Some prefixes are logical, though. And in today’s lesson we’ll present the most common ones with their basic meanings and, of course, examples.
First of all, let’s review a little bit. What is a prefix?
Prefixes come at the beginning of a word. They are usually one to three letters long, and attaching them to a word will affect the word’s meaning.
Now look through the text again and find all the verbs with prefixes.
They are: disappointed, misunderstood, disliked, replace, returned, undercooked, disagreed and overcharging.
The prefixes DIS- and UN- mean not / against / the opposite of. These are negative prefixes.
dress – undress (одеться — раздеться)
lock — unlock (запереть — отпереть)
like — dislike (нравиться — не нравиться)
agree — disagree (согласиться — не согласиться)
appear — disappear
plug in – unplug
Can you translate these pairs of words?
появиться — исчезнуть
включать в сеть – отключить от сети
Did you unplug the iron?
When you go on a trip, you always discover that you forgot a few things.
The prefix MIS- means bad / badly / wrong / wrongly.
understand – misunderstand (понять – неправильно понять)
hear – mishear (слышать – расслышать неправильно)
behave – misbehave (вести себя – неправильно себя вести)
inform – misinform
Can you translate the words?
информировать – дезинформировать
I misunderstood the teacher – I did exercise 5 instead of exercise 4.
My children were misbehaving at the birthday party, so I took them home early.
The prefix RE- means to do something again.
write – rewrite (писать – переписать)
read – reread (читать – перечитать)
construct – reconstruct (строить – перестраивать)
do – redo (делать – переделать)
The coffee is cold so I am reheating it.
Hollywood studios often remake foreign films.
The prefix EN- means to cause (a person or thing) to be in the place, condition, or state named by the stem.
circle – encircle (окружить)
large – enlarge (увеличить, расширить)
rich – enrich (обогатить)
danger – endanger (подвергать опасности)
The house is encircled by a high fence.
This money has enabled me to buy a new computer.
The prefix UNDER- means not enough / below.
do – underdo (недожарить)
cook – undercook (недоварить)
load – underload (недогрузить)
estimate – underestimate (недооценить)
I thought it would be an easy game but I had underestimated my opponent.
This chicken is undercooked; I don’t think it’s safe to eat.
The opposite of UNDER- is the prefix OVER-. It means too much / an excessive amount.
sleep – oversleep (проспать, спать слишком много)
work – overwork (переработать)
do – overdo (переборщить, переусердствовать)
Stop the car! I think the engine is overheating.
I missed the bus this morning because I overslept again.
I went to the gym yesterday, but I think I overdid it a bit.
The prefix OUT- used to add the meaning going further or being better than.
do – outdo (превзойти)
live – outlive (прожить дольше, пережить)
last – outlast (продолжаться дольше, чем что-либо)
grow – outgrow (перерастать)
speak – outspeak (высказаться, говорить лучше)
She doesn't drink or smoke and I'm sure she'll outlive us all.
He's already outgrown these shoes.
So, we’ve finished with the rules. Now it’s time to practice the rule.
Complete the sentences with the verbs derived from the words in CAPITALS.
1. The student had to reread the book.
2. All the rubbish must be recycled.
3. The students disobeyed the teacher.
4. The town is encircled by fortified walls.
5. He enlarges his vocabulary by learning a lot of words.
6. The parents discouraged the child and he felt upset.
7. Teachers sometimes misunderstand the students.
8. He undressed and lay on the bed.
9. They are always trying to outdo each other with their jokes and funny stories.
10. Choose between the two forms of the verb and underline the correct answer.
That’s all for today!
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