Is there a suffix in masquerade?

in masquerade, masque means mask, so is -rade or -ade its suffix?

-ade is a suffix in lemonade and blockade, meaning "product".

Note: I have searched it in etymonline, but couldn't find my answer

  • 3
    The word is Suffix, not "postfix". And, yes, -ade is a suffix. But it's not an English suffix; it's a French suffix, and the whole word masquerade was borrowed from French, as you can tell by its spelling. Furthermore, it's a derivational suffix, and derivational affixes are all irregular and don't have much meaning. So, it doesn't help to recognize something as being a suffix when it doesn't mean anything. – John Lawler Oct 21 '13 at 22:36
  • Thanks. (1) So its suffix is -ade. why is there a r in front it? (2) is the linked pdf file an excerpt from a book? – Tim Oct 21 '13 at 22:42
  • (1) Probably because the root ends in /r/. (2) No. It's a handout from an Intro Ling class. There are more available. – John Lawler Oct 22 '13 at 2:51
  • (1) masque doesn't end with r, does it? – Tim Oct 22 '13 at 2:54
  • No, but infinitives do in French, and this is from a verb root. I mentioned that it wasn't an English suffix, right? – John Lawler Oct 22 '13 at 2:57

The word apparently comes from Spanish máscara "mask", which according to most scholars comes from Arabic sakhira "to ridicule", so says the Oxford English Dictionary. Some scholars rather believe it comes from a Germanic root. (Perhaps surprisingly, there is less consensus about the English word mask: it may come from the same Arabic root, or from a different Latin root derived from a Germanic root, or from a combination of both.)

The Spanish suffix -(a)da means something like "abstract noun related to x", and Spanish mascarada means "masquerade". English has -e because it was borrowed through French, in which language feminine -a is regularly converted into -a. The Spanish suffix comes from Latin -(a)ta, the feminine past participle.

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