This is a quick question mainly because I want to remember this word that I saw somewhere on Wikipedia. What is the name for the word structure noun-adjective? For example, director-general, directorS-general, etc.


I think you may be referring to a post-positive or postpositive (adjective):

  • describes an adjective (called a post-positive adjective) or adjectival phrase that appears, within the same clause, after the noun that it modifies. In some languages (such as French, Spanish, and Italian), this is the normal syntax, but in English it is more unusual, largely confined to archaic, poetic, or certain traditional phrases, some of them probably holdovers from Law French. An English example of a postpositive appears in the following sentence: "They heard creatures unseen" (rather than the more grammatically typical sentence "They heard unseen creatures").

Source: www.wikipedia.org

| improve this answer | |
  • For postpositive, the OED has: “Characterized by postposition; having the function of being placed after or suffixed; enclitic.” I somewhat doubt he was looking for enclitic (as in gimme it), but perhaps. The OED also says that postfix can apply to entire words, but that is at best an uncommon use of that term outside of programming languages with postfixed operands or functions. – tchrist Sep 1 '14 at 22:12

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