Entries linking to disaffection
word-forming element of Latin origin meaning 1. "lack of, not" (as in dishonest); 2. "opposite of, do the opposite of" (as in disallow); 3. "apart, away" (as in discard), from Old French des- or directly from Latin dis- "apart, asunder, in a different direction, between," figuratively "not, un-," also "exceedingly, utterly." Assimilated as dif- before -f- and to di- before most voiced consonants.
The Latin prefix is from PIE *dis- "apart, asunder" (source also of Old English te-, Old Saxon ti-, Old High German ze-, German zer-). The PIE root is a secondary form of *dwis- and thus is related to Latin bis "twice" (originally *dvis) and to duo, on notion of "two ways, in twain" (hence "apart, asunder").
In classical Latin, dis- paralleled de- and had much the same meaning, but in Late Latin dis- came to be the favored form and this passed into Old French as des-, the form used for compound words formed in Old French, where it increasingly had a privative sense ("not"). In English, many of these words eventually were altered back to dis-, while in French many have been altered back to de-. The usual confusion prevails.
As a living prefix in English, it reverses or negatives what it is affixed to. Sometimes, as in Italian, it is reduced to s- (as in spend, splay, sport, sdain for disdain, and the surnames Spencer and Spence).
c. 1200, affeccioun, "desire, inclination, wish, intention;" mid-14c., "an emotion of the mind, passion, lust as opposed to reason;" from Old French afection (12c., Modern French affection) "emotion, inclination, disposition; love, attraction, enthusiasm," from Latin affectionem (nominative affectio) "a relation, disposition; a temporary state; a frame, constitution," noun of state from past-participle stem of afficere "to do something to, act on," from ad "to" (see ad-) + facere (past participle factus) "to make, do" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put").
The sense developed in Latin from "disposition" to "good disposition, zealous attachment." In English the sense of "love" is from late 14c. Formally it goes with affect (v.2), but it has absorbed some sense from (v.1). Related: Affections.
updated on August 23, 2018
the widespread disaffection of the troops