follow Dictionary.com

What's the "een" in Halloween?

dieresis

[dahy-er-uh-sis] /daɪˈɛr ə sɪs/
noun, plural diereses
[dahy-er-uh-seez] /daɪˈɛr əˌsiz/ (Show IPA)
1.
the separation of two adjacent vowels, dividing one syllable into two.
2.
a sign (¨) placed over the second of two adjacent vowels to indicate separate pronunciation, as in one spelling of the older forms naïve and coöperate: no longer widely used in English.
3.
Prosody. the division made in a line or verse by coincidence of the end of a foot and the end of a word.
Also, diaeresis.
Origin
1605-1615
1605-15; < Latin diaeresis < Greek diaíresis literally, distinction, division, equivalent to diaire-, stem of diaireîn to divide (di- di-3 + haireîn to take) + -sis -sis
Related forms
dieretic
[dahy-uh-ret-ik] /ˌdaɪ əˈrɛt ɪk/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for dieretic

dieresis

/daɪˈɛrɪsɪs/
noun (pl) -ses (-ˌsiːz)
1.
a variant spelling of diaeresis
Derived Forms
dieretic (ˌdaɪəˈrɛtɪk) adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for dieretic

dieresis

n.

also diaeresis, 1610s, "sign marking the division of a diphthong into two simple sounds," from Late Latin diaeresis, from Greek diairesis "division," noun of action from diairein "to divide, separate," from dia- "apart" (see dia-) + hairein "to take" (see heresy).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
dieretic in Medicine

dieresis di·er·e·sis (dī-ěr'ĭ-sĭs)
n.
See solution of continuity.

dieretic di·e·ret·ic (dī'ə-rět'ĭk)
adj.

  1. Of or relating to dieresis.

  2. Dividing; ulcerating; corroding.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for dieresis

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for dieretic

11
12
Scrabble Words With Friends