A suffix is an element of a language that is added to the end of a word. E.g. -ly is a suffix often found at the end of adverbs: really, quickly, happily, strangely, etc., -d/-ed is a suffix often found at the end of a verb to denote the simple past: used, bruised, grazed, heated, etc.

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When are Roman Numeral suffixes appropriate for number abbreviations?

This question was asked and closed last year as general reference. However, it did not attract the caliber of answer I expected it to. I suggested the following content as an edit, but it was rejected ...
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1answer
51 views

Whats the difference between “-ist” and “-er”

The suffixes -ist, and -er are added to a base word to name a person who does an action: pitch, pitcher. Some more examples: carpenter artist painter nationalist banker dentist ...
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1answer
8k views

“Exercise” but not “exercize”

Many words are spelled with -ise in British English and -ize in American English: realise/realize sanitise/sanitize scrutinise/scrutinize But exercise can only be spelled with -ise, never with ...
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12answers
5k views

What word means a “male temptress”?

I was trying to describe a man who entices others into making bad decisions. I have several closely related questions: Is it okay in English to refer to a man as a temptress? Is there a uniquely ...
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1answer
82 views

-gate, and gamergate

I have always understood the phrase ____-gate to refer to a controversy or conflict. For example, deflate-gate was the hubbub around whether the Patriots intentionally deflated balls during the AFC ...
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2answers
71 views

What is the tense used in a phrase such as “He is trapped”?

I've read that the -ed suffix usually indicates a "past participle" (as in "I was trapped"), but: I'm not sure what part-of-speech "trapped" functions as in the phrase. Indicating present state ...
11
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2answers
559 views

Abolition vs. Abolishment

At times I have caught myself writing the noun form of abolish as "abolishment" and then pausing before realizing it should really be "abolition". Even as I type my spellchecker tells me that ...
13
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1answer
614 views

How is “erogenous” incorrectly formed?

When I check the etymology of erogenous in OED, it is mentioned that it is incorrectly formed (along with erogenic). Etymology of erogenous from OED: formed as erogenic adj. + -ous suffix. ...
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2answers
2k views

Is it “falsy” or “falsey”?

I have seen both versions of the word, falsy and falsey. It can mean "something that is equivalent to false" in computer science, such as "The only two falsy values in the Ruby Language are false and ...
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1answer
77 views

The origins of surname suffixes [closed]

When did mankind begin using surname suffixes such as Jr. Sr. I II III?
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1answer
47 views

Difference between the suffixes “-titude” and “-titute”

I vaguely remember the suffix "-titude" is related to a state of a particular action, such as "certitude", which means a state of being sure. But I don't know what this kind of suffix actually is ...
5
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1answer
125 views

What is the opposite of -genic?

English uses the suffix -genic to mean "generating / generated by / producing": anxiogenic (anxiety-producing) iatrogenic (caused by the healer / doctor) neurogenic (produced by the nervous system) ...
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1answer
168 views

Is the following sentence odd? “I find them comic”

But this is the Old Bailey. He's a Lord — or she's a Lady. You may find the wigs and the ceremonial ways that people refer to each other strange or intimidating. I was advised. But I don't find ...
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5answers
13k views

“Old days” or “olden days”?

Sometimes I use the phrase "back in the old days". I was recently in a class where the trainer kept using the phrase "olden days." Which usage is acceptable?
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2answers
86 views

Can any noun ending in -ism be swapped for -ist?

Can any noun ending in -ism describing some system or belief be changed for -ist to describe a member of that system? My question might be confusing, so I will run through a few examples: Nihilism ...
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4answers
4k views

Usage of -ist and -ian, when to use which?

This is a question bugging me for a long long time, especially for a non-native speaker like myself. We have physicist standing for the people doing physics research, as is linguist, chemist, etc. ...
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1answer
78 views

Are products of wordsmithing proper english?

Several languages in which English has its roots have easily definable rules. For example, sticking "A" in from of an adjective can mean the opposite of that adjective (Asymmetrical, symmetrical), ...
2
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1answer
2k views

“Scientific” versus “scientifical”

Is there any substantive difference in the meanings of these two words? Is the latter considered a proper word at all? If the answer to either of the above questions is yes, what are these words' ...
2
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4answers
8k views

Difference between the use of “resilience” and “resiliency”

I constantly hear people use the word "resiliency" (especially sports broadcasters and the like). I've always used "resilience" instead. Is there a preferred word to use in any given situation? As ...
4
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3answers
1k views

Is ‘Yes-ish’ a perfect alternative to Yes, or is it 'Yes ‘on condition’? Is it received English?

I found a word ‘Yes-ish’ in the answer (from PLL) to my question about the meaning of ‘Stuck to the script’ I posted today. As it is quite new to my ear, I consulted with Wikipedia before logging out ...
13
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7answers
30k views

What's the difference between “adviser” and “advisor” — are both interchangeable?

I work for a financial services provider and we deal with "Financial Advisors" all the time. Increasingly, I'm seeing people send emails and so forth with the term "Financial Adviser" and the terms ...
2
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4answers
2k views

What is the meaning of P.S. in a name?

I have a project to parse names and there's a thing called title (mr. dr.), suffix (esq. ph.d.) and generation (ii, iii, jr.), but I don't have the faintest idea what "p.s." is. It's in the following ...
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1answer
81 views

Why are some “-ist” suffixed words used as the adjective form over the more common “-istic”?

Generally speaking, for any kind of "-ism", the suffix "-ist" produces the noun form and "-istic" produces the adjective form. But there are some "-ist" suffixes that are acceptable or even more ...
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2answers
78 views

Dynamicality from Dynamic?

I am using the word 'dynamic' as the following definition from the Merriam Webster's Dictionary. 3. of random-access memory : requiring periodic refreshment of charge in order to retain data The ...
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3answers
244 views
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5answers
13k views

“Extensible” vs. “extendible”

Where does the adjective form extensible come from and does it connote anything different than extendible? What's the difference, if any, between the two?
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4answers
7k views

Is there a rule for which suffix to use when creating adjectives from nouns?

There are many suffixes that are used to create adjectives from nouns (-al, -ic, -ive, -y). Are there any rules used to create adjectives from nouns? In example, why is the adjective excessive, and ...
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1answer
1k views

Using short adjectives as adverbs, such as “easy” & “short”

I know that some adjectives (such as easy & short) can be used as adverbs in some situations, but when can this happen and what adjectives does this apply to? This definitely works: "He stopped ...
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1answer
77 views

Suffixes -hood -dom -ness… Is there any rule?

First of all this is my first question on this board, and I was not sure to ask it here or on English Language Learners. English is not my mother tongue, hence I wonder if there was any rule to ...
57
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5answers
4k views

Why is it “geometric” but “theoretical”?

I just came across a course name: Geometric and Theoretical Optics. The mismatched endings bug me. Why do we have both -ical and -ic endings? Is there any difference in meaning between, say, ...
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3answers
83 views

What's the best, most concise word for the abbreviations put after one's name to denote the achievement of degrees?

Such as M.d., RN, LSW.... I'm looking for the word that fills the blank in following sentence: It is as if living with her for as long as he did merits the addition of a ________ to his ...
0
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2answers
38 views

Omit -> Omission

Why does omit turn to omission and not omition? Examples of more words acting the same are welcome (I found Submit) P.S. Is Omission the same as Omitting? (Trying to compare with fit -> fitting)
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4answers
4k views

Origin of the “-y” or “-ie” diminutive suffix to denote intimacy/tenderness? (E.g. Bob→Bobby, dad→daddy, Doug→Dougie)

Many names seem to get a "-y" or "-ie" at the end when the speaker wishes to denote a hint of familiarity, intimacy, or tenderness. Examples can be seen not just in names, but in terms like puppy, ...
5
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2answers
982 views

Is there any rhyme or reason to when one should double the last consonant when adding -ed or -ing? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: focussed or focused? The double consonant Sometimes, final consonants are doubled when adding -ed or -ing to the end of a verb whose penultimate letter is a vowel. ...
8
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2answers
3k views

Why is “k” added to “panic” when suffixes added (as in “panicky”)?

When adding any suffix to the word "panic," a "k" is added after the "c". Examples: panicked, panicking, panicky. Why is this the case? Are there any other English words that do the same? I'm also ...
4
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2answers
417 views

Why drop the “i” in “explanation”?

I often catch myself trying to write ?explaination, phonetically spelling the word in my head. To my chagrin I get part way through and have to stop myself. So I’m wondering why is the i dropped? I ...
15
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2answers
589 views

What’s going on with “drink > drench”? Is it like “passage > passenger”?

Edit: I am looking for a particular linguistic term for this process (which here uses terminal palatalization to indicate such) of turning passive verbs like drink into active verbs like drench. I ...
38
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1answer
3k views

Origin of “-ing”

What is the origin of the suffix -ing used to form gerunds and present participles? Why is the suffix the same in both cases?
16
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2answers
1k views

What's the deal with “fiery”?

How did English end up with the adjective fiery (instead of *firy) from fire, but miry from mire and wiry from wire? Are there any other words where the noun is -ire and the adjective is -iery?
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5answers
2k views

No coffee, no workee - meaning

No coffee, no workee What does that expression exactly mean? And how do you pronounce it?
0
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1answer
64 views

Fruitful? Fruitless? Fruitempty? Fruitmore? [closed]

I notice that the word fruitful's opposite is fruitless. It's kind of bizarre. Figuratively speaking, if the activity produces no fruit, it is fruit-less. But if it does produce fruit, shouldn't it ...
0
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1answer
83 views

Morphological analysis of 'unlawfulness'

How would you give the internal structure of the word 'unlawfulness'? My attempt: un - law - ful - ness prefix - noun - suffix - suffix Internal structure: law + ful > Adjective un + law + ful > ...
3
votes
2answers
833 views

What is the history and meaning of the suffix “-ism”?

I have always understood that an "-ism" suffix on something implies that the word being applied to is a belief or doctrinal worldview or otherwise a philosophy. This blogpost sums up that ...
3
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2answers
955 views

Is there any dictionary that decomposes an English word into prefix, root, and suffix?

Is there any dictionary that shows the decomposition of each word into these three parts, if application at all? For instance, "incapable" is divided into prefix "in", root "cap", and suffix "able". ...
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2answers
3k views

Does the suffix -ion in “invention” mean the same in “station”?

Is the suffix -ion in the word invention the same as in the words direction, nation, fiction, station?
7
votes
5answers
10k views

Which is the proper spelling: “Adapter” or “adaptor”?

In my current project we are writing a program to convert a newer protocol to an older one. These conversion programs are being referred to as adapters, but the team cannot agree which spelling to ...
17
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5answers
12k views

What is the distinction between “among” and “amongst”?

It seems amongst is quite often used as a synonym for among but it is supposed to sound more distinguished. Is there any difference in the meaning?
4
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3answers
246 views

Terminology for a word containing a prefix/suffix or neither

Does terminology exist for discriminating between words which do/don't contain a prefix/suffix? How could I describe this difference in the synonyms 'discontinue' and 'stop'? Here, 'dis' is a prefix ...
0
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1answer
481 views

What does the ‘-lite’ in Rick Santorum's ‘We're not just an Obama-lite’ mean? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What does “Japan-lite problems” mean? I found the word, ‘Obama-lite’ in the headline of the Time magazine article (March 17) , titled “Santo: “We’re Not Just An ...
3
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4answers
7k views

Relation between “concept” and “conception”

concept: an abstract idea; a general notion conception: the way in which something is perceived or regarded These two words are troubling me because it seems that there is a way that concept ...