Ok, this one is giving us (Matt and the 5th graders) fits. The lovely word "sesquipedalian" came up in class. <sesqui> was pretty straightforward, but <ped> was more complicated. First of all we found 5 different <ped> roots:

ped (L) - foot
ped (G) - child
ped (G) - soil
pedis (L) - louse
pedum (L) - shepherd's crook

The one we wanted was foot, so we started to construct a matrix (see below), eliminating all the words that Word Searcher turned up that didn't seem related to foot, and right away ran into the silent <-e> question again -- <ped> requires the final <-e> to avoid doubling, correct?

We think the in <-ian> and <-ity> is a connecting vowel, but we're not sure -- we can find words with both, and also with just <-an> and <-ty>. It seems more clear in some of the other words -- but what about the <e> in "pedestal?" Is that the silent <-e> or another connecting vowel, or something else?

Then there were all the words related to "pedestrian." They seem to come from a different, but related, Latin root -- "pedester." So, do we include them or not? And, if so, how?

If anyone can help us out on all of this, we'd appreciate it.

back

sesqui

im

ali

milli

centi

bi

brevi

capri

carpo

decem

poly

pede

(L: foot)

al

s

ed

(i)an

(i)ty

ing

i

cure

gree

ment

ed

s

stal

(o)meter

s

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