the, as a prefix to English terms, is derived from numerous resources. (1) It usually indicates on or perhaps in (from an, a forms of AS. on), denoting a situation, as in afoot, by walking, abed, amiss, asleep, aground, aloft, away (like. onweg), and analogically, ablaze, atremble, an such like. (2) AS. of down, from, as with adown (AS. ofdūne off the dun or mountain). (3) AS. ā- (Goth. us-, ur-, Ger. er-), generally offering a rigorous force, and quite often the sense of away, on, right back, like in happen, abide, ago. (4) Old English y- or i- (corrupted from like. inseparable particle ge-, cognate with OHG. ga-, gi-, Goth. ga-), which, as a prefix, made no essential inclusion on definition, such as mindful. (5) French à (L. ad to), as in abase, achieve. (6) L. a, ab, abs, from, such as avert. (7) Greek insep. prefix α without, or privative, perhaps not, as in abyss, atheist; comparable to E. un-.