HOSP/HOST comes from the Latin word hospes and its stem hospit- meaning both “host” and “guest.” Many words based on it came to English through French, which often dropped the -pi-, leaving host-. Hospitality is what a good host or hostess offers to a guest. A hospital was once a house for religious pilgrims and other travelers, or a home for the aged.
- Hostage: A person given or held to ensure that an agreement, demand, or treaty is kept or fulfilled. The kidnappers released their hostage unharmed once all their demands were met.
- Hospice: A place or program to help care for the terminally ill. Uncle Harold was moved to the hospice only after my aunt had almost collapsed with exhaustion while caring for him.
- Hostel: An inexpensive, supervised place for young travelers to stay overnight. Generations of American college students have traveled through Europe cheaply by staying at hostels instead of hotels.
- Inhospitable: (1) Not welcoming or generous; unfriendly. (2) Providing no shelter or food (such as a desert). Shot down by government agents, the smuggler struggled for survival on the rocky, inhospitable island.
Source: Merriam-Webster’s Vocabulary Builder