On Sat, Jan 10, 2009 at 7:40 PM, Rebecca Bettencourt
<[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> sing: genus, species
> pl: genera, species
> adj1: generic, specific
> adj2: general, special
> verb2: generalize, specialize
> verb1: ?, specify

> What goes in the ? slot? Why is there no "genify" or "generify" or
> some such word?

Well, most of that derivation had already taken place in Latin and
French before the words were borrowed into English, so this is a hard
line of questioning to find definitive answers for.

For instance, the word "specify" itself comes via French from a
verbing that had already taken place in VL : "species" -> "species
ficus" -> "specificus" -> "specificare".

Since "ficus" didn't enter into the derivations from "genus",
"generify" wouldn't be a plausible co-derivation, but it's fine as a
later addition.  I prefer "genericize" myself.

> Was "generalize" created to fill that hole? Then someone screwed it up
> again by inventing "specialize?"
> --
> Hasta la pasta,
> Rebecca Bettencourt.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> I tried the real world once; didn't really care for it.

Mark J. Reed <[log in to unmask]>