Vocabulary DIGNUS

This week's word, dignus, meaning worthy or deserving, will help students build their corpus of English derivatives from Latin roots.

Teach Latin root words and your students will build vocabulary exponentially as they learn to recognize and use dozens of new words.

Each Latin word provides the opportunity to access prior knowledge, that is, review English derivatives that most students already know. Then build on that foundation by introducing new words from the same root.

Have fun and let the students solidify and expand vocabulary!

Latin Word of the Week (November 12, 2008)

Dignus, Digna, Dignum
worthy, deserving

Last week, we saw how the Latin root corpus is at the center of many worthy English vocabulary words.

Now check out this list of derivatives from the Latin root dignus:

Dignity: worthiness. A former college basketball star, he felt that donkey basketball was beneath his dignity.

Indignity: Unworthiness. The white-collar criminal faced the indignity of a public trial, but did not do much time in prison.

Dignitary: a person of high rank, especially in government. The dignitaries of the Democratic party presided over the convention in Denver.

Dignify: to honor, to ennoble; to confer an honorable title. She wouldn't dignify her brother's stupid jokes by laughing.

Dignation: worthiness, honor.

Indignation: anger at something considered vile, unworthy, or offensive. The judge showed her indignation toward the defense attourney who kept up his empty objections.

Indignant: expressing such anger at something considered offensive.

Deign: to think fit to one's rank or worthiness; to condescend. The Mayor deigned to speak at the boy scout convention.

Disdain: to treat as unworthy, to despise, to scorn. She loved to skydive, but she disdained tea parties.

Latin Used in English Today:

Dignitas: The Roman concept of Dignitas meant the virtue or worthiness held by a citizen. The word in still used today by organizations such as Dignitas Intenational , a humanitarian organization fighting HIV/AIDS, and Dignitas of Switzerland, a group supporting euthanasia and death with dignity.

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