Posted by: Jack Henry | January 29, 2019

Editor’s Corner: Bumblebee and Prime

A couple of weeks ago, my husband wanted to see a movie and said, “Let’s go see Bumblebee!” I had no idea what I was getting into, but I like the movies, so I went along. Well, as many of you probably know, Bumblebee is the latest Transformers movie: Transformers, as in the 1980s robots that turn into cars or planes or trucks, and then back into robots. I wanted to hate this movie, but I didn’t. The ‘80s soundtrack and references to The Breakfast Club won me over. I laughed, I cried, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. What a sucker!

What does that have to do with today’s Editor’s Corner? One of the characters in Transformers world is named Optimus Prime, and I just so happen to have a list of words from Daily Writing Tips that are related to the word “prime.” Here is a selection of those words. For the full list see “Primes and Princes” here.

This post lists and defines words deriving from the adjective primus, meaning “first” or “finest.”

  • premier: first, or earliest; as a noun, a synonym for “prime minister”
  • premiere: most commonly, a first performance or broadcast of a performing-arts production or the first day of an exhibition (and, rarely, the leading actress in a production); as a verb, pertains to appearing for the first time in a starring role, or the first performance of a performing-arts production
  • prima donna: the first female singer in an opera or a concert; by extension, based on the stereotypical arrogance of such performers, a person who is difficult to work with
  • prima facie: apparent or self-evident (or, in legal usage, legally sufficient to establish a case or a fact); on first appearance
  • primacy: the state of being first, or the office of a high-ranking priest called a primate
  • primary: first in order of development or time, or importance or value, or basic, direct, or firsthand; also, relating to something initial or preparatory, or pertaining to a first division, or relating to a preliminary election, as well as derived from ores or not derivable from other phenomena (such as colors); as a noun, something first, dominant, or most proximate
  • primate: any of various species, including humans, apes, monkeys, and related animals; also, the highest-ranking priest in a given area
  • prime: as a noun, the first hour of the day, the best or most active period or stage, the earliest stage, the best or leading individual or part, the first part of the day, a symbol resembling an apostrophe used for various designations (including units of length, angular measure, or time), or a truncation of “prime number” or “prime rate”; as an adjective, best or first, or original (also various mathematical senses); as a verb, apply, load, prepare, stimulate, or supply
  • primer: a short introductory piece of writing, such as an informative article or a reading-instruction book; also, a device used to ignite explosives, a molecule necessary for formation of another molecule, or an initial coating, such as for painting a surface
  • primeval: ancient, basic, or first created, formed, or existing
  • primigravida: one that or who is pregnant for the first time
  • primo: the first or leading part in an ensemble; as an adverb, in the first place; as an adjective, slang synonym for excellent
  • primus: in the Scottish Episcopal Church, the leading bishop; also, the first word of the Latin phrase primus inter pares, meaning “first among equals”

Kara Church

Technical Editor, Advisory

Symitar Documentation Services

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