Old EnglishspEnglish
UnpfxFreely and widely used since Old English in compounds with native and imported words, it disputes with Latin-derived cognate in- the right to form the negation of certain words (indigestable/undigestable, etc.). Often euphemistic (e.g. untruth for "lie"). The most prolific of English prefixes, it even is used to make words from phrases (e.g. undreamed-of; unheard of; unputdownable, 1947, of a book; un-in-one-breath-utterable etc., but not restricted to un-; cf. put-up-able-with, 1812). As a prefix in telegram-ese to replace not and save the cost of a word, it is first attested 1936. (e.g. unhand, undo, unbutton),
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