Submitted by goossun on June 21, 2004

negating

How do you negate the word deliberate? Undelibertae is not correct according to dictionaries. What then?

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try 'inadvertent'.

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Deliberate is one of those fun English words that has two very different meanings, yet appears the same in both.

To "deliber-ATE", means: to discuss, debate, argue, etc. an issue or topic.

"They were in deliberations for hours."
"They deliberated about whether it was better to go with red than with blue."

For this meaning/pronunciation, the opposite meaning would thus be to "agree", "concur", or
"compromise".
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To do something "deliberately" or to be "deliberate" with a short 'ate' instead of a long---means: to do something willfully, with intention, on purpose.

"He deliberately ate my food in retaliation for me stealing his shampoo."

The opposite of this would thus be
"unintentional", "not on purpose", "I didn't do it deliberately!", etc.

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Oops, I see you don't support HTML. Sorry. :)

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Depending on the context, you might want to use <I>non-deliberate</I>; if it were a formal context, for example.

-<A HREF="http://comfylinguist.blogspot.com/">Arm... Linguist</A>

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"Indeliberate" is correct, though rather antiquated and unnatural-sounding. You may want to choose a replacement word, such as: "accidental," "random," or "unplanned.

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