Thursday, January 10, 2008

Make Yourself Useful

A couple of matched roots are used to declare that something is useful. The Greek chresto- means useful, as does the Latin util-.

chrestomathic: Devoted to the learning of useful matters. [Greek chrestos, useful + matheia, learning]
chrestomathy: A collection of choice passages from an author or authors, esp. one compiled to assist in the acquirement of a language. [Greek chrestos, useful + matheia, learning]
inutile: Useless; of no service; unprofitable. [Latin in-, not + utilis, useful]
ophelimity: The capacity to satisfy a need, desire, or want. [Greek ophelimos, useful, serviceable]
panchreston: An explanation or theory which can be made to fit all cases, being used in such a variety of ways as to become meaningless. [Greek pan-, all + chrestos, useful]
polychrest: A thing adapted to several different uses. Now esp.: a homoeopathic drug used to treat a variety of diseases. [Greek poly, many + chrestos, useful]
proficuous: Profitable; beneficial, useful. [Latin proficuus, useful]
sideroachrestic: A form of hypochromic anemia in which impaired synthesis of hemoglobin renders treatment with iron useless. [Greek sideros, iron + a-, not + chrestos, useful]
utility: The fact, character, or quality of being useful or serviceable; fitness for some desirable purpose or valuable end. [Latin utilis, useful]

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