|A Handful of Suffixes||Robert A.
January 21, 2010
|able, ible||able to be, capable of being||pourable, drinkable, readable, washable, curable, visible, flexible, collectible|
|ance, ancy||state of, process of||performance, reliance, defiance, radiance, acceptance, ascendancy, discrepancy, infancy|
|ator||one who does [the verb]||terminator, culminator, agitator, instigator, generator, incubator, accelerator, invigorator, elevator|
|dom||condition, office, state||kingdom, freedom, wisdom, sheikdom, fiefdom, sheikdom|
|ee||one who receives||payee, mortgagee, employee, appointee, abductee, examinee, referee, refugee|
|er, or||one who does [the verb]||driver, hiker, reader, manager, polisher, speaker, counselor, author, creator, director, sculptor|
|ful||filled with||frightful, delightful, wonderful, cupful, wakeful, bashful, bountiful, beautiful, cheerful, colorful, dreadful, fateful|
|ify||to make into||purify, deify, simplify, clarify, petrify, reify, exemplify,
|ification||process of making into||purification, deification, simplifiction, clarification, petrification|
|ish||the nature of, resembling||Cornish, Irish, bookish, freakish, foolish, boorish, selfish, sluggish, priggish|
|ism||doctrine, system, characteristic quality||capitalism, heroism, optimism, skepticism, realism, patriotism, communism, idealism, conservatism|
|ist||one who performs; an adherent of an ism||tympanist, cellist, idealist, communist, realist, moralist, pharamacist, pragmatist|
|ize||to make into||rationalize, normalize, realize, capitalize, sterilize,
dramatize, utilize, colorize
|ization||the process of making into||rationalization, normalization, realization,
||loveless, fearless, worthless, nameless, baseless, bottomless, effortless, friendless, noiseless, harmless|
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End note: In my second year of Latin in high school, we were required to find twenty-five Latin word roots and for each root to find five English words containing the root. This exercise not only helped to increase my vocabulary, but it gave me a valuable insight into the way many English words are constructed. As technology advances, new words are coined to cover some new idea or thing, and often these words are created from existing roots. A little root knowledge here can therefore help us to begin to understand a new word even before we read about its meaning.
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