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In
linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguistic analysis include phonetics, phonet ...
, a suffix (sometimes termed postfix ) is an
affix In linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguistic analysis include p ...
which is placed after the stem of a word. Common examples are
case endings Grammatical case is a linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguist ...
, which indicate the
grammatical case Grammatical case is a linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguist ...
of nouns, adjectives, and verb endings, which form the conjugation of verbs. An '' inflectional suffix'' is sometimes called a desinence or a grammatical suffix or ending. Inflection changes the grammatical properties of a word within its syntactic category. Derivational suffixes can be divided into two categories: class-changing derivation and class-maintaining derivation. Particularly in the study of
Semitic languages The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental countries, transcontinental region in Afro-Eurasia which generally includes Western Asia ...

Semitic languages
, suffixes are called afformatives, as they can alter the form of the words. In
Indo-European studies Indo-European studies is a field of linguistics and an interdisciplinary field of study dealing with Indo-European languages, both current and extinct. The goal of those engaged in these studies is to amass information about the hypothetical prot ...
, a distinction is made between suffixes and endings (see Proto-Indo-European root). Suffixes can carry grammatical information or lexical information. A word-final segment that is somewhere between a free morpheme and a
bound morpheme In linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying and modeling them. The traditional areas of linguistic analysis include ph ...
is known as a suffixoidKremer, Marion. 1997. ''Person reference and gender in translation: a contrastive investigation of English and German''. Tübingen: Gunter Narr, p. 69, note 11. or a semi-suffixMarchand, Hans. 1969. ''The categories and types of present-day English word-formation: A synchronic-diachronic approach''. Munich: Beck, pp. 356 ff. (e.g., English ''-like'' or German ''-freundlich'' "friendly").


Productivity

Suffixes can carry grammatical information (
inflection In linguistic morphology, inflection (or inflexion) is a process of word formation, in which a word is modified to express different grammatical categories A grammatical category or grammatical feature is a property of items within the gramm ...
al suffixes) or lexical information ( derivational/lexical suffixes'').'' An inflectional suffix is sometimes called a desinence or a grammatical suffix.


Examples


English

:''Girls''—where the suffix ''-s'' marks the plurality. :''He makes''—where suffix ''-s'' marks the third person Grammatical number, singular present tense. :''It closed''—where the suffix ''-ed'' marks the past tense.


French

:''De beaux jours''—where the suffix ''-x'' marks the plural. :''Elle est passablement jolie''—where the suffix ''-e'' marks the feminine form of the adjective.


German

:''mein Computer''—where the lack of suffixes is because its case, nominative, is "unmarked" :''meines Computers''—genitive case :''meinem Computer''—dative case :''meinen Computer''—accusative case


Russian

:''мой компьютер—''where the lack of suffixes is because its case, nominative, is "unmarked" :''моего компьютера''—genitive case :''моему компьютеру''—dative case :''мой компьютер''—accusative case :''за-туш-и-ть свечу''—where first word has -и- suffix, -ть ending (infinitive form); second word with ending -у (accusative case, singular, feminine). :''wikt:доброжелательный, добр-о-жел-а-тель-н-ый''—добр- root, -о- interfix, -жел- root, verbal -a- interfix, nominal wikt:-тель, -тель suffix, adjectival -н- suffix, adjectival -ый ending (nominative case, singular, masculine).


Inflectional suffixes

Inflection changes the grammatical properties of a word within its syntactic category. In the example: :I was hoping the cloth wouldn't fade, but it has faded quite a bit. the suffix ''-ed'' inflects the root (linguistics), root-word ''fade'' to indicate past participle. Inflectional suffixes do not change the word class of the word after the inflection. Inflectional suffixes in Modern English include:


Verbs

*-s third person singular present tense *-ed past tense *-t past tense *-ing progressive aspect, progressive/continuous aspect *-en past participle


Nouns

*-s plural number *-en plural number (irregular)


Adjectives and Adverbs

*-er Comparative syntax in English, comparative degree *-est superlative, superlative degree


Derivation

Derivational suffixes can be divided into two categories: class-changing derivation and class-maintaining derivation.Jackson and Amvela(2000): Word, Meaning and Vocabulary- An Introduction to Modern English Lexicology. London, Athenaeum Press, p.88 In English, they include * Wikt:-ise, -ise/Wikt:-ize, -ize (usually changes nouns into verbs) * Wikt:-fy, -fy (usually changes nouns into verbs) * wikt:-ly, -ly (usually changes adjectives into adverbs, but also some nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-ful, -ful (usually changes nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-able, -able/wikt:-ible, -ible (usually changes verbs into adjectives) * wikt:-hood, -hood (usually class-maintaining, with the word class remaining a noun) * wikt:-ess, -ess (usually class-maintaining, with the word class remaining a noun) * wikt:-ness, -ness (usually changes adjectives into nouns) * wikt:-less, -less (usually changes nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-ism, -ism (usually class-maintaining, with the word class remaining a noun) * wikt:-ment, -ment (usually changes verbs into nouns) * wikt:-ist, -ist (usually class-maintaining, with the word class remaining a noun) * wikt:-al, -al (usually changes nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-ish, -ish (usually changes nouns into adjectives/ class-maintaining, with the word class remaining an adjective) * wikt:-oid, -oid (usually changes nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-like, -like (usually changes nouns into adjectives) * wikt:-ity, -ity (usually changes adjectives into nouns) * wikt:-tion, -tion (usually changes verbs into noun) * wikt:-logy, -logy/wikt:-ology, -ology (usually class-maintaining, with the word class remaining a noun) * wikt: -ant, -ant (usually changes verbs into nouns, often referring to a human agent)


Synthetic languages

Many synthetic languages—Czech language, Czech, German language, German, Finnish language, Finnish, Latin, Hungarian language, Hungarian, Russian language, Russian, Turkish language, Turkish, etc.—use many endings.


References


External links

*{{Commonscatinline, Suffixes Suffixes, Affixes