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able, unrelenting, irresistible, incorruptible, immovable, invisible. Such instances as—careless, contentless, excuseless, harmless, helpless, hopeless, repulseless,—are doubtful : ' repulse', for example, is both verb and noun, and though we may think that here it is probably the verb, we cannot be quite sure.
Ly is a modification of 'like'. Both are adjective suffixes, added chiefly to nouns and adjectives. 'Ly’ is very much more common than 'like'; and though in most cases they have the same force, they sometimes take slightly different shades of meaning when joined to the same root. The general sense conveyed by the suffix is likeness, conformity, congruity, belonging to : childlike, gentlemanlike and gentlemanly, godlike (compare 'godly ’), ladylike, lordlike (compare 'lordly'), cowardly, fatherly, fleshly, friendly, heavenly, kingly and kinglike, lovely, motherly, rascally, worldly. The distributives-daily, nightly, weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly, &c., may be originally adverbs, now used also as adjectives. 'Ly', added to an adjective, means approach to the idea expressed by the root, the idea in weakness, inferiority, dilution (compare ‘ish'), or as an inclination or tendency: cleanly, deadly, elderly, goodly, lonely, lowly, only, sickly, weakly. The word “likely' itself is a curious case. We have also `inly', 'overly', which were accompanied in Saxon by uply', 'outly', &c.
Ly, the ordinary suffix for deriving adverbs of manner or quality from adjectives, needs little illustration. The examples are numberless : fairly, carefully, wickedly, worthlessly. The process is extended to participles : boastingly, deprecatingly, disapprovingly, exultingly, invitingly, provokingly; admittedly, avowedly, confessedly, con. fusedly, dejectedly. Such adverbial conversion of the participle is a powerful means of condensation. (See pp. 132, 135.)
The activity of this ‘ly' hinders in some degree the development of the adjective ending 'ly', especially the formation from adjectives. To compensate for this, some
adverbs in 'ly' are used with the force of adjectivesweekly, nightly, &c. But adjectives in 'ly' are not to be used as adverbs; an error that writers sometimes inad. vertently fall into.
The two uses of 'ly' render some words ambiguous. Thus, 'earthly', 'heavenly', may mean-like the earth,
grovelling', like heaven, 'a heavenly scene'-or they may mean place of residence, 'earthly parents', 'heavenly father'. In 'daily', 'weekly', the ‘ly’adds no meaning to the noun : ‘daily bread' might be day bread'. In the Lord's prayer, we might have—Give us this day the day's bread, the bread of the day': 'daily' in ordinary use is day by day', 'each or every day'.
The adverbial ending meal (originally '-mealum', a dative) is now represented by the almost solitary ‘piecemeal'.
Older writers have 'flockmel', 'limbmeal' (Shak. Cymb.), stoundemele' (from hour to hour, moment by moment; Germ. Stunde, 'hour ').
Ness is one of our most prolific suffixes. It is used almost exclusively to form abstract nouns from adjectives. It joins on to adjectives of whatever origin, native or classical, with the utmost readiness, expressing usually a state or condition: brightness, fatness, friendliness, goodness, hardness, illness, readiness, usefulness, sinlessness, suitableness, troublesomeness, unreservedness, voluptuousness. Sometimes 'ness' interchanges with some classical suffix: compare such instances as effeminateness' and 'effeminacy'. “Nothingness' is a bold irregularity. • Wilderness' is concrete in meaning.
Ow, a termination chiefly in the first instance) of nouns and adjectives, has been developed from various old endings: u (v), wa or (e)we (ve), (i)g, or h. Meadow (meadu), shadow (scadu), fallow (fealu, fealwe-Lat. fulvus), callow, narrow, shallow (adj.), yellow, mallow (malu, Lat. malva), sparrow, swallow; bellows (bealg), borrow, farrow (fearh), follow, hallow, hollow, marrow, sallow (noun), willow. 'Sinew' and 'borough' might have been expected to take ow'. Widow', 'window', and some others, are merely
assimilated forms. The suffix 'ow' is no longer of practical importance with a view to new formations.
Red, reckoning, numbering, design, condition or state, (compare Germ. Rath, counsel'), is now unimportant. It occurs in the two words 'hatred', 'kindred'(= 'kinship’, thence collectively 'kin '). Perhaps "hundred' might be added, with the explanation of 'ten-reckoning' (10 X 10). In the older language there existed a few more : ‘sibrede' (relationship, affinity), “frendrede' (friendship), 'manrede' (vassalage) neyeburredde' (neighbourhood).
Ric, power, dominion, jurisdiction', has also had its boundaries seriously contracted. It now remains only in 'bishopric'.
Ship, shape, form, manner', is one of the vigorous suffixes. It is most frequently connected with nouns, especially class names of persons, to indicate quality or condition, occupation or office, rank or dignity': apprenticeship, authorship, chieftainship, consulship, editorship, fellowship, friendship, generalsbip, lordship, ownership, professorship, workmanship. Worship’ is worthship’; 'courtship'
* ' may be from the verb (“the act of courting'). ‘Hardship’, drunkschipe' (Gower), are froin adjectives,
* Landscape' (earlier 'landskip ') is a well preserved form of the suffix, with an older meaning. According to Mr. Earle, we got it from the Dutch artists, ‘ Landschap'.
The form '-schaft’ is most extensively used in German: 'gesellschaft', 'companionship’ (society).
Some occurs frequently as an adjective ending. It is joined to various parts of speech, adding to the root the meaning of 'likeness, inclination, suitableness'. With adjectives: blithesome, darksome, gladsome, lonesome, weari. some, wholesome; with nouns: delightsome, handsome, heartsome; with verbs : irksome, meddlesome, winsome, noisome (O. Fr. noisir nuire), buxom, (bugan, to bend; slightly diguised). Many others, though probably from verbs, may possibly come from nouns : gamesome, laboursome, quarrelsome, toilsome, troublesome.
Ster, the fem. suffix, is discussed under the Gender of
Nouns. In modern usage, spinster' alone is a purely feminine compound. The others, for the most part, if not in every instance, were originally feminine, corresponding to masculines in 'er(e) ?; they are now either masculine or common : bandster (dialectic), deemster, dryster, gamester, huckster, maltster, punster, rhymester, songster, tapster. In some instances there is a depreciatory or contemptuous force, which has attached to the suffix from some of the vile roots that it has allied itself with. Often 'ster' seems to be little more than a variety of ‘er'denoting the agent.
Ward conveys the meaning of motion in some direction, usually 'iu the direction of 'something. It is joined chiefly to adverbs, and to nouns that are mere remnants of adverbial phrases. It thus helps to make new adverbs; and also adjectives, some of which are but converted adverbs. In many of the adverbs, there is a second form ‘wards', which may appear in the preposition toward, towards'; the additional adverbial s is a genitive ending: backward(s), downward(s), eastward(s), outward(s), toward(s), upward(s), wayward. Not unfrequently the preposition opened up, like a rhizopod, to take in the governed word : 'to me ward', 'to God ward', 'from Bordeaux ward', 'to us ward', to the windward'. Compare Lat. 'ad Oceanum versus’(to Oceanward). Hence such decayed adverbial expressions as churchward(s), heavenward, homeward(s), landward, leeward, seaward(s), skyward.
Wise, ways, 'manner, mode, way', coalesces with adjectives or nouns to make adverbs : likewise, nowise or noways, otherwise ; lengthwise or lengthways, sideways or sidewise.
The Saxon adjective rihtwis' is transformed to‘righteous', under the assimilating influence of the classical ending. Dr. Morris gives also 'voisterous (O. E. bostwys)'.
Y, sometimes ey, has for its chief function the converting of nouns, especially material and abstract, into adjectives. It is used most liberally with both native and classical roots : bloody, boggy, bony, dusty, finny, hilly, mealy, moody, snowy, speedy, spicy; clayey, pursey (from 'purse': distinguish 'pursy '), skyey; balmy, faulty, flowery, fruity,
juicy, papery, savoury. Formations from verbs may be quoted with more or less probability: bandy (legs), blowy, cranky, doughty, drowsy, shaky, showy, sweepy, wavy, wieldy: some of these, as 'showy’, ‘wavy', may be from
It may be noted that this termination represents more than one older form. Most of the instances are from a prior ig, eg : 'guilty' (syltig), ‘misty' (mistig), 'moody' (môdeg), fenny' (fenneg, -ig). A few stand for iht (which still flourishes in German): hairy, stony, thorny, &c. Of course, new examples are without reference to these older forms.
The Classical Suffixes. The Classical suffixes in English are exceedingly numerous. Some of them have come down to us from Greek and Latin with little or no modification; others, in passing through French, have been changed to such a degree that we have difficulty in recognising them; and a few have quite dropped away. In many cases the French form has been passed over in favour of the older Latin form. It will be enough for us to notice such as are still active in new formations, and such as at any rate impart a decided meaning to the root; we may also now and again touch on other notable instances. But we desire to encroach as little as possible on Latin Etymology.
Ade is mostly collective, sometimes abstract, while a few words have both meanings: balustrade, barricade, blockade, cannonade, cascade, cavalcade, colonnade, fusilade, lemonade, orangeade, parade, promenade, salad, serenade, tirade.
Age is a very important suffix, joining with both native and classical roots. It forms nouns, abstract, collective,
There are verbal abstracts—cartage, coinage, marriage, passage, tillage; and abstracts from nouns, expressing quality, condition, or rank-baronetage, bondage, courage, peerage, vassalage. The collective meaning is perhaps the most common-assemblage, baggage, carnage, cellarage, cordage, foliage, herbage, luggago, plumage;