-al

1

a suffix with the general sense “of the kind of, pertaining to, having the form or character of” that named by the stem, occurring in loanwords from Latin (autumnal; natural; pastoral), and productive in English on the Latin model, usually with bases of Latin origin (accidental; seasonal; tribal). Originally, -al1 was restricted to stems not containing an -l- (cf. -ar1); recent lapses in this rule have produced semantically distinct pairs, as familiar and familial.

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Question 1 of 7
weal
Compare -ical, -ial.

Origin of -al

1
< Latin ālis, -āle; often replacing Middle English -el < Old French

Words nearby -al

Definition for -al (2 of 3)

-al2

a suffix forming nouns from verbs, usually verbs of French or Latin origin: denial; refusal.

Origin of -al

2
< Latin -āle (singular), -ālia (plural), nominalized neuter of -ālis -al1; often replacing Middle English -aille < Old French < Latin -ālia

Definition for -al (3 of 3)

-al3

Chemistry. a suffix indicating that a compound contains an aldehyde group: chloral.

Origin of -al

3
presumed to be short for aldehyde
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for -al (1 of 3)

-al1

suffix forming adjectives

of; related to; connected withfunctional; sectional; tonal

Word Origin for -al

from Latin -ālis

British Dictionary definitions for -al (2 of 3)

-al2

suffix forming nouns

the act or process of doing what is indicated by the verb stemrebuttal; recital; renewal

Word Origin for -al

via Old French -aille, -ail, from Latin -ālia, neuter plural used as substantive, from -ālis -al 1

British Dictionary definitions for -al (3 of 3)

-al3

suffix forming nouns

indicating an aldehydeethanal
indicating a pharmaceutical productphenobarbital

Word Origin for -al

shortened from aldehyde
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

Medical definitions for -al

-al

suff.

Aldehyde:butyral.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.