- Acids are named based on their anion — the ion attached to the hydrogen. In simple binary acids, one ion is attached to hydrogen. Names for such acids consist of the prefix “hydro-“, the first syllable of the anion, and the suffix “-ic”.
- Complex acid compounds have oxygen in them. For an acid with a polyatomic ion, the suffix “-ate” from the ion is replaced with “-ic.”
- Polyatomic ions with one extra oxygen (as compared to the typical polyatomic ion) have the prefix “per-” and the suffix “-ic.”
- Polyatomic ions with one fewer oxygen have the suffix “-ous”; ions with two fewer have the prefix “hypo-” and the suffix “-ous.”
- Strong bases with “-OH” (hydroxide) groups are named like ionic compounds. Weak bases are named like molecular compounds or organic compounds.