Etymology
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-ide 

word-forming element used in chemistry to coin names for simple compounds of one element with another element or radical; originally abstracted from oxide, which was the first so classified, in which the -ide is from acide "acid."

The suffix is really -dus (-do-), the -i- repr. the orig. or supplied stem-vowel ; it occurs without the vowel in absurdus, absurd, blandus, bland, crudus, raw (crude), etc. [Century Dictionary]
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æ (2)

Anglo-Saxon alphabetic character representing a simple vowel corresponding to the short "a" in glad or the long one in dare, ultimately from Latin and used by scribes writing Old English because it represented roughly the same sound as Latin æ (see æ (1)). In Middle English the vowel tended to become -a- when short (glad, sad, from Old English glæd, sæd, etc.), -e- when long.

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pedantocracy (n.)

"supremacy or power of bookish theorists," 1842, from pedant + -cracy "rule or government by," with connecting vowel. Coined (in French) by Mill in a letter to Comte.

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eth (n.)
name of an Anglo-Saxon runic character (Ð, ð) representing the sound "-th-," 1846, from th + e, "the usual assistant vowel in letter-names" [Century Dictionary].
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cosmo- 

before a vowel cosm-, word-forming element from Latinized form of Greek kosmos (see cosmos). In older use, "the world, the universe;" since 1950s, especially of outer space. Also cosmico-.

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sloe (n.)

fruit of the blackthorn, Old English slah (plural slan), from Proto-Germanic *slaikhwon (source also of Middle Dutch sleeu, Dutch slee, Old High German sleha, German Schlehe), from PIE *sleiə- "blue, bluish, blue-black" (see livid).

The vowel has been influenced by that in the old plural form, which according to OED persisted into the 17c. Scottish slae preserves the older vowel. Sloe-eyed is attested from 1804; sloe gin first recorded 1878.

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biennium (n.)
"space of two years," 1835, from Latin biennium "two years, a period of two years," from bi- "two" (see bi-) + annus "year" (see annual (adj.)). For vowel change, see biennial.
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breakfast (n.)

"first meal of the day," mid-15c., from the verbal phrase; see break (v.) + fast (n.). For vowel shift, see below. An Old English word for it was undernmete (see undern), also morgenmete "morning meal."

Spanish almuerzo "lunch," but formerly and still locally "breakfast," is from Latin admorsus, past participle of admordere "to bite into," from ad "to" + mordēre "to bite" (see mordant). German Frühstück is from Middle High German vruostücke, literally "early bit."

In common with almuerzo, words for "breakfast" tend over time to shift in meaning toward "lunch;" compare French déjeuner "breakfast," later "lunch" (cognate of Spanish desayuno "breakfast"), from Vulgar Latin *disieiunare "to breakfast," from Latin dis- "apart, in a different direction from" + ieiunare, jejunare "fast" (see jejune; also compare dine). Greek ariston in Homer and Herodotus was a meal at the break of day but in classical times taken in the afternoon.

The long/short vowel contrast in break/breakfast represents a common pattern where words from Old English have a long vowel in their modern form but a short vowel as the first element of a compound: Christ/Christmas, holy/holiday, moon/Monday, sheep/shepherd, wild/wilderness, etc.

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gyneco- 

also gynaeco-, before a vowel gynec-, word-forming element meaning "woman, female," from Latinized form of Greek gynaiko-, combining form of gynē "woman, female," from PIE root *gwen- "woman." Also see æ (1).

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bramble (n.)
Old English bræmbel "rough, prickly shrub" (especially the blackberry bush), with euphonic -b- (which then caused the vowel to shorten), from earlier bræmel, from Proto-Germanic *bræmaz (see broom). Related: Brambleberry "blackberry" (late Old English).
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