Vocabulary 03 - Antonyms 3
Often in English we come across words which have a relationship with one another, such as PUSH-PULL, PRESENT-ABSENT and SINK-FLOAT. We seem to be familiar with these words and know what they represent. We also seem to think they are opposites of one another. In fact, they are antonyms
of one another.
These types of antonyms come under the category of complementary antonyms
. Complementary antonyms have either one or the other possibility. Whenever you use these words you always think of them as complementary in an opposite sense. Before/after, dead/alive
are other examples of complementary antonyms.
Antonyms are also classified into various other types. We have relational antonyms, such as part/whole, parent/child and mother/daughter, that describe opposite relationships. Antonyms are also grouped into another type known as graded antonyms. In graded antonyms the words allow us to talk of things in some sort of a high to low scale. Examples of graded antonyms include rich/poor, optimistic/pessimistic and hard/soft. One more type of antonym is that in which a word can be converted into its antonym by simply adding a prefix. Words such as fortune/misfortune, entity/nonentity and clockwise/anticlockwise come readily to mind. In these examples the original word is prefixed by either mis-, non- or anti- to form its antonym.
English as a language is home to countless words that help us to communicate better. Antonyms have a special place and these can be used imaginatively to put forth your views effectively. While our earlier quizzes have delved into the different types of antonyms, the quiz that follows will introduce you to many new antonyms, thus helping to increase your vocabulary.