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a suffix occurring as the final element in informal shortenings of nouns (ammo; combo; condo; limo; promo); -o, also forms nouns, usually derogatory, for persons or things exemplifying or associated with that specified by the base noun or adjective (cheapo; pinko; sicko; weirdo; wino).
a suffix occurring in colloquial noun or adjective derivatives, usually grammatically isolated, as in address:
cheerio; kiddo; neato; righto.
Origin of -o
perhaps orig. the interjection O, appended to words as in def 2; as a derivational suffix reinforced by clipped forms of words with -o- as a linking element (e.g., photo, stereo), by Rom nouns ending in o, and by personal nouns such as bimbo and bozo, of obscure origin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for -o


forming informal and slang variants and abbreviations, esp of nouns: wino, lie doggo, Jacko
Word Origin
probably special use of oh
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for -o



  1. used to form adjectives
  2. Having the indicated characteristics: berserko/ luxo/ neato/ sicko/ wrongo
  3. used to form nouns 2: foldo/ freako/ klutzo/ muso •This fanciful formation is increasingly current

Related Terms

double-o, five-o, four-o, single-o

[1960s+; fr a humorous imitation of Spanish or Italian words, more probably Spanish because of the similar el -o pattern of coinage]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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