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Does the word connotate exist in modern language?

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2010-11-15 14:29:28

This is a question that is not agreed upon in the

English-speaking community. It is used, but some people think

incorrectly. Some dictionaries list it as an obsolete form,

replaced by "connote." However, other dictionaries list it as a

regular entry, and many people use it. So the debate is whether

usage trumps tradition, as with many other words. In any case, the

word is alive and well, and used often, whether or not it is used



The ultimate authority on English usage is the Oxford English

Dictionary ("OED"), and in the USA another popular authority is

Webster's. Neither has an entry for "*connotate" but both have an

entry for "connote":

The incorrect form "*connotate" probably derives from

back-formation from the noun "connotation."

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