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Old 03-15-2002, 12:59 PM
Join Date: Oct 1999
Posts: 5,441
What does the prefix ipso mean?

I was trying to read an article in the current issue of JACS whenI ran into the word ipso chromic.

"Indeed, recording of the UV spectrum of 1 in alkaline conditions (pH12) led to a reversible ipsochromic shift (max 324 nm) and appearance of a second absorption (max 407 nm) that disappeared upon neutralization in agreement with the proposed structure."

J. Am. Chem. Soc., 124 (11), 2400 -2401, 2002

I tried every dictionary I know but can't find it. I figure maybe I can put the word together from it's latin roots, but I can't find a website that shows latin roots and their definitions.
Old 03-15-2002, 01:09 PM
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Posts: 18,903
Just guessing here but seeing if we can deduce a meaning...

From Merriam Webster:
Main Entry: ipĚso facĚto
Pronunciation: 'ip-(")sO-'fak-(")tO
Function: adverb
Etymology: New Latin, literally, by the fact itself
Date: 1548
: by that very fact or act : as an inevitable result

Main Entry: eo ipĚso
Pronunciation: A-O-'ip-(")sO
Usage: foreign term
Etymology: Latin
: by that itself : by that fact alone
From those two definitons I would guess that ipso means "by that". So, ipsochromic to me would mean "by that of chromium".

Maybe that doesn't make a lot of sense but there it is FWIW.
Old 03-15-2002, 01:19 PM
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Speed's trunk, usually
Posts: 2,005
Re: What does the prefix ipso mean?

Originally posted by Christopher
"Indeed, recording of the UV spectrum of 1 in alkaline conditions (pH12) led to a reversible ipsochromic shift (max 324 nm) and appearance of a second absorption (max 407 nm) that disappeared upon neutralization in agreement with the proposed structure."
It's been well over 10 years since I've buried a nose in JACS. The ole Chem degree has gotten dusty. Thanks for reminding me what it's like; I sometimes miss it.

Don't you just love it when those chemists start talking dirty like that?

BTW, I seem to understand that the term ipso means, in this context, "entire" such that the passage is trying to say that the entire spectrum shifted the same amount and a new abs line was found at 407 nm. This can be thought of the opposite of what can be seen in NMR readings where some res-lines shift and other stay put (or even shift in the opposite direction.)

Don't hold me to that, though.
I ain't sayin' I'm cheap, but I straight line depreciated my alarm clock as a business expense.
Old 03-15-2002, 02:47 PM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: KCMO
Posts: 11,126
"Ipso" is a form of a Latin word usually translated as "itself." Sometimes in idiomatic English it's translated as "very," as in "that very man = that man himself." As a prefix, it usually means "self-."

"Ipso facto" is in the ablative case (absent in English), which in Latin implies meanings that require a preposition in English. Hence when we say "ipso facto" means "by the fact itself," the word "by" is suggested by the particular Latin case used, and not by the actual words.

Because Latin inflection uses various word endings to indicate grammatical case, the letters that follow "ips-" can vary in different uses of the word. Talking about that very fact in the objective case would yield "ipsum factum" in Latin. Unlike "ipso facto," that phrase does not express a meaningful thought in English, so you never see it.
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