What do you call a pair of words with opposite meanings that differ only by a prefix?

In general, words with opposite meanings are called antonyms. Is there a word that describes the subset of antonyms that are different only by a prefix where the prefix negates the meaning of the root word?

For instance, hot and cold are antonyms, but don’t share a root and would not be described by the term I am looking for.

Paired and unpaired are antonyms and share the same root paired. These words would be described by the term I am looking for.

Other examples:

  • TypicalAtypical
  • IntendedUnintended
  • EnfranchisedDisenfranchised

Lost positives would be a special case of this type of word where only the negated sense of the word is in use, e.g. disgruntled is a commonly used word, but gruntled is not.

A bonus answer would point to a list of such negating prefixes.


There’s a book that might interest you about antonyms in English.

Antonyms in English: Construals, Constructions and Canonicity
by Steven Jones

There’s a whole chapter on the difference between “canonical antonym pairs” (such as good/bad) and what the author call “negated antonymous” words (such as good/not good) and if they’re an affixal or non affixal negation (such as not happy vs unhappy) . On page 151 the author call these pairs of words that differ only by their affix…

affixal antonyms

as opposed to “lexical antonyms”
note that by using the plural of antonym it implies automatically the pair of words with opposite meaning, there’s no need to add “pair”.
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Source : Link , Question Author : David , Answer Author : P. O.

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