a combining form occurring in loanwords from Greek, meaning “five” (Pentateuch); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (pentavalent).
combining form
five: pentagon, pentameter, pentaprism

word-forming element meaning “five, containing five,” from Greek penta- (before a vowel pent-), comb. form of pente “five,” related to Aeolian pempte (see five), with -a- by analogy of hepta-, ennea-, deka-.

penta- or pent-


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  • Pentachlorophenol

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  • Pentacle

    [pen-tuh-kuh l] /ˈpɛn tə kəl/ noun 1. . 2. a similar figure, as a hexagram. /ˈpɛntəkəl/ noun 1. another name for pentagram n. 1590s, from Medieval Latin pentaculum “pentagram,” a hybrid coined from Greek pente “five” (see five) + Latin -culum, diminutive (or instrumental) suffix. OED notes other similar words: Italian had pentacolo “anything with […]

  • Pentad

    [pen-tad] /ˈpɛn tæd/ noun 1. a period of five years. 2. a group of five. 3. the number five. 4. Chemistry. a pentavalent element or group. 5. Climatology. a period of five consecutive days. /ˈpɛntæd/ noun 1. a group or series of five 2. the number or sum of five 3. a period of five […]

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