Discover more from Roots2Words
Minor Roots: -ODE
Saturdays are perfect days for energizing surprises. Surprise—we’re talking about the minor root -ODE today!
The word ode makes some people think of lyric poems, while others imagine flying insects in the order Odonata. If you’re mechanically minded, though, some kind of conductor likely comes to mind. That’s because the affix -ODE, which means way or path, appears so frequently in electronics:
anode (noun) - the positive terminal, electrode, or element in a cell or battery.
BREAKDOWN: ANA- (up) + -ODE (way)
anode (noun) - the negative terminal, electrode, or element in a cell or battery.
BREAKDOWN: CATA- (down) + -ODE (way)
diode (noun) - a device through which current can pass freely in only one direction; a device used in circuits for converting alternating current to direct current
BREAKDOWN: DI- (two) + -ODE (way)
electrode (noun) - a conductor used to establish electrical contact with a nonmetallic part of a circuit
BREAKDOWN: ELECTR- (electricity) + -ODE (way)
Various electrical devices are named for their number of electrodes or other structural elements including triodes (three), tetrodes (four), pentodes (five), hexodes (six), heptodes (seven), and octodes (eight).
Interestingly, ODE- is also used as a base meaning way or path in a number of important words, including episode, exodus, and methodical.