mind, spirit

Quick Summary

The Latin root anim means “mind” or “spirit.” This Latin root is the word origin of a good number of English vocabulary words, including unanimous, animated, and animosity. The root anim is easily recalled via the word animal, for an animal is a living, moving creature and so contains a “spirit” and “mind.”

"Anim" Animates Words

The Latin root anim means “mind” or “spirit.” Today we will fill our “minds” with some “spirited” words in an animated fashion!

One of the primary things that separates plants and animals is the fact that animals move and function with a “mind” whereas plants are stationary. A “spirit” moves things, which is the idea behind the meaning “spirit” in anim. Hence, animals are animated, that is, they have a “spirit” which moves them; someone who is animated is exhibiting a great deal of lively “spirit.” That which is inanimate, like a rock, has no “mind” and no moving force, or “spirit.”

An animated film is one in which still pictures have been infused with the “spirit” of movement, bringing the pictures to life. This is what animation is all about. A film’s animator is the one responsible for giving these still pictures their “spirit,” enabling them to move. A successful animator who has made a lot of money might be inclined to be magnanimous and so possess magnanimity, thus being great in the “spirit” of giving.

Have you ever experienced a vote taken in a group that was a unanimous decision, where all participants were of one “mind”? Such unanimity is rare and could very well have engendered equanimity or a state of being balanced and peaceful in “mind” among the group’s members since they were all in agreement.

I hope that you now feel animated or “spirited” about the Latin root anim, and are able to keep it in “mind”!

  1. animal: a creature that has a “spirit” and “mind”
  2. animated: “spirited”
  3. inanimate: not being “spirited”
  4. animation: a state of being “spirited” and hence possessing movement
  5. animator: one who gives a “spirit” to still pictures
  6. magnanimous: of being great in “spirit”
  7. magnanimity: the state of being “great” in spirit
  8. unanimous: being of one “mind”
  9. unanimity: the state of being of one “mind”
  10. equanimity: the state of having a balanced and hence peaceful “mind”


  • animus

    If you have animus against someone, you have a strong feeling of dislike or hatred towards them, often without a good reason or based upon your personal prejudices.

  • pusillanimous

    To be pusillanimous is to be cowardly.

  • equanimity

    If you exhibit equanimity, you demonstrate a calm mental state—without showing upset or annoyance—when you deal with a difficult situation.

  • magnanimity

    If someone exhibits magnanimity towards another, they show them kindness and noble generosity, especially after defeating them in battle or after having been treated badly by them.

  • animated

    When a person is animated, they are energetic, lively, and filled with excited activity.

  • inanimate

    Something inanimate is dead, motionless, or not living; therefore, it does not display the same traits as an active and alive organism.

  • unanimous

    In a unanimous decision about something, all people involved agree or are united in their opinion.

  • animadversion

    Animadversion is the act of strongly criticizing another person for something they have done.

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