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misunderestimation

noun; derivation
An estimate that is or proves to be too low and is therefore incorrect. Intended Meaning: an estimate that is or proves to be too low and is therefore incorrect Analysis: mis- under- estimate -ion wrong less than normal -N a wrong estimation that is too low Possible Reason Used: The writer was most likely making fun of “Bushisms” when he decided to use this title. (Bush said in a speech “They misunderestimate me.”) Bush probably used this word because he tends to mess up his grammar rules, but it is reasonable to see how he formed this particular neologism. Though made of separate prefixes, the beginning of the word is reminiscent of misunderstand. Also, the end of the word is simply the commonplace word underestimation. Bush could clearly have been thinking of both words when he coined this term. Normally, underestimation inherently conveys that the person making the opinion is wrong in the views of the speaker, but Bush decided to include the prefix anyway. Also, due to a similarity in structure, the word carries a subtler meaning of misunderstanding, as in the audience does not understand what Bush is trying to do.
 
The Misunderestimation of Laura Bush
Etymology : Derivation from root ESTIMATE, plus prefixes UNDER- and MIS- and suffix -ION
Source : Texas Monthly magazine title
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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