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6.19: Bound Bases and Bound Stems

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Bound Bases and Bound Stems

1. You know that a base that can stand free as a word is called a free base. If we remove the prefix re- from the word recharge, we are left with charge, which is a freebase.

You also know that a stem that can stand free as a word is called a free stem. If we remove the prefix re-from the word recharged, we are left with charged, which is a free stem. Charged is a free stem that contains the free base charge plus the suffix -ed.

A base that cannot stand free as a word is called a bound base. A bound base has to have a prefix or a suffix or another base added to it to make it into a word. If we remove the prefix re-from the word reject, we are left with ject, which is a bound base because it cannot stand free as a word. You can reject something, but you can't just 'ject' it.

A stem that cannot stand free as a word is called a bound stem. If we remove the prefix re- from the word rejection, we are left with jection, which is a bound stem that contains the bound base ject and the suffix -ion.

2. A base that can stand free as a word is called a free base .

A base that cannot stand free as a word is called a bound base .

A stem that is also a word is called a free stem.

A stem that is not a word is called a bound stem.

3. In the word respect the prefix is re-. What is the base? spect Is this abound base or a free base? a bound base. Underline this base in the following words:

\begin{align*}&\text{pro\underline{{spect}}} && \text{\underline{{spect}}ator} && \text{in\underline{{spect}}or} && \text{\underline{{spect}}acles}\end{align*}

4. In the word introduce the prefix is intro-. What is the base? duce

Is the base bound or free? bound. Underline this base in the following words:

\begin{align*}&\text{intro\underline{duce}} && \text{pro\underline{duce}} && \text{de\underline{duce}} && \text{re\underline{duce}} && \text{in\underline{duce}}\end{align*}

5. In the word interception, -ion is a suffix. If you take that suffix away, what stem do you have left?intercept. Is it a bound or a free stem? free stem Now if you take the prefix inter- away from intercept, what is the base that is left? cept. Is this base bound or free? bound

Underline this base in the following words.

\begin{align*}&\text{de\underline{cept}ive} && \text{per\underline{cept}s} && \text{ac\underline{cept}ed} && \text{ex\underline{cept}ing} && \text{re\underline{cept}ion} && \text{con\underline{cept}s}\end{align*}

6. In the word promote the prefix is pro-. What is the base? mote

Underline this base in the following words. In some of the words the base ends with the letter <e>. In some the <e> has been deleted. We won't worry for now about the <e> deletion: Just underline as much of the base as you can see in the word:

7. Each of the following words contains a prefix, a bound base, and a suffix. Analyze each word into its prefix, bound base, and suffix. This time, show any final <e> deletions:

\begin{align*}&\text{re\underline{mote}} && \text{\underline{mot}or} && \text{pro\underline{mote}} && \text{de\underline{mote}} && \text{\underline{mot}ion}\end{align*}

Word = Prefix + Bound Base + Suffix
prospecting = pro + spect + ing
producer = pro + duc\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + er
deception = de + cept + ion
acceptable = ac + cept + able
remotest = re + mot\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} +est
inspected = in + spect + ed
introducing = intro + duc\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + ing
conception = con + cept + ion
promotion = pro + mot\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + ion
exception = ex + cept + ion
reduces = re + duc\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + es
intercepted = inter + cept + ed
demoted = de + mot\begin{align*}\cancel{e}\end{align*} + ed
receptive = re + cept + ive

Word Builder. In Word Builder you are given some elements—in this case, prefixes, bound bases, and suffixes. Your job is to combine them to form words. In the tables we will give you formulas that will show you what kind of elements each word is to contain and how many letters each word will have. Some of the words you build will involve final <e> deletion, which you do not have to show in this activity; just write out the word. Here are the elements you have with which to work. You can use each element more than once:

Prefixes: in-, re-

Bound Bases: cept,duce, spect, mote

Suffixes: -ed, -ion

Here is an example of a table filled out. Notice that because of final <e> deletion duceappears in the table as duc.

Prefix Bound Base Suffix
r e d u c e d

Now try these:

Prefix Bound Base Suffix
r e s p e c t e d
Prefix Bound Base Suffix
i n s p e c t i o n
Prefix Bound Base
r e d u c e
Bound Base Suffix
m o t i o n

Teaching Notes. If students are confused by the two terms base and stem, it may be a good idea to review Lesson 5. As was said in the Teaching Notes to Book 1, Lesson 28, bound bases can be difficult and abstract for students. They are abstract because it is not always easy to see what meaning they are adding to their words. The meaning of the entire word easily overwhelms that of the bound base, and thus of any bound stems containing it. Most bound bases come from Latin or Greek, and knowing the original meaning of the Latin or Greek source can help. Although over the intervening centuries meanings can change enough that one cannot predict the modern meaning by simply adding up the Latin or Greek meanings, still there is always a connection. So it is worthwhile for students to notice bound bases, to have some sense of their root meanings, and to explore the logical connections between the root and the modern meanings. The more such connections the students can see, the less arbitrary their language is for them and the more they have by which to remember words and their spellings.

Item 1.Discharge: The prefix dis- can mean removal, and when you discharge something, you remove the charge from it.

Item 3. In the exercises that the students do in theBasic Speller whether a base is free or bound will be pretty easy to see. In more difficult or uncertain cases, the best adivice is to look in the dictionary. Dictionaries do not list most bound bases, but they do list a special kind of bound base called a combining form. Combining forms combine with other free or bound bases and with affixes, usually suffixes. Unlike the bound bases we are talking about in this lesson, combining forms are still productive — that is, we still use them to create new words. So they tend to have meanings that are quite straightforward and accessible. Examples of combining forms are mini, as in miniseries or tele as in telephone or television. If you find your base listed as a combining form, it is what we are calling a bound base. If you find it listed as an independent word, it is a free base, or free stem. If you do not find it listed at all, you can assume that it is bound.

In respect the bound base spect comes from a Latin word that meant “to look.” You might have the students discuss what looking has to do with the four spect words. Some spect words with special deletions: aspect (a\begin{align*}\cancel{d}\end{align*}+spect) (for which see AES, pp. 77-78), suspect (su\begin{align*}\cancel{b}\end{align*}+spect) (AES, pp. 78-79), expect (ex+\begin{align*}\cancel{s}\end{align*}pect). In Latin after ex-a stem-initial \begin{align*}<\mathrm{s}>\end{align*} was often deleted. The <x> spelled [ks], creating in stems that started with \begin{align*}<\mathrm{s}>\end{align*} the sound sequence [kss], which would quickly simplify to [ks], thus making the \begin{align*}<\mathrm{s}>\end{align*} redundant.

Item 4. Introduce analyzes to intro-“in, into” plus duce comes from “to lead, bring.” When you introduce something, you lead into it.

Item 5. intercept analyzes to inter- “between” plus cept “take, seize.” When you intercept a pass in a football game, you take or seize it from between the passer and the person to whom it was thrown.

Item 6. Promote analyzes to pro- “forward” plus mote “move.” When you promote something, you move it forward. What does moving have to do with the other mote words?

Word Builder. In the example table notice that induced would also have fit. In the second table inspected would be a legitimate solution. In the fourth table other possible fits are remote, induce, and the rare incept and recept Word Builders might prove to be another good group activity, with one or more people looking up candidate words (and non-words) in the dictionary.

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Date Created:
Feb 23, 2012
Last Modified:
Jul 07, 2015
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