Tuesday, May 11, 2010

130 / The "-ize" Form

According to the online version of the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Thomas Nashe (1567-1601) has claimed credit for inventing the "-ize" suffix:

The suffix -ize has been productive in English since the time of Thomas Nashe (1567–1601), who claimed credit for introducing it into English to remedy the surplus of monosyllabic words. Almost any noun or adjective can be made into a verb by adding -ize; many technical terms are coined this way, as well as verbs of ethnic derivation, and verbs derived from proper names. Nashe noted in 1591 that his -ize coinages were being criticized, and to this day new words ending in -ize are sure to draw critical fire.

I must admit that when I first encounter the "-ize" form of a word, usually as some sort of neologism, I definitely feel that the new "-ize" word should be subjected to "critical fire."

Nonetheless, there is one "-ize" word I really like:
The word "realize" goes along with my idea of what the world is all about: our world is not "real" in some absolute sense, but it is brought into existence by our actions. It becomes "real" when we make it so.

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