-en

1
  1. a suffix formerly used to form transitive and intransitive verbs from adjectives (fasten; harden; sweeten), or from nouns (heighten; lengthen; strengthen).

Origin of -en

1
Middle English, Old English -n- (as in Middle English fast-n-en, Old English fǣst-n-ian to make fast, fasten); cognate with -n- of like verbs in other Gmc languages (Old Norse fastna)

-en

2
  1. a suffix used to form adjectives of source or material from nouns: ashen; golden; oaken.

Origin of -en

2
Middle English, Old English; cognate with Old High German -īn, Gothic -eins, Latin -īnus; see -ine1

-en

3
  1. a suffix used to mark the past participle in many strong and some weak verbs: taken; proven.

Origin of -en

3
Middle English, Old English; cognate with German -en, Old Norse -inn

-en

4
  1. a suffix used in forming the plural of some nouns: brethren; children; oxen.

Origin of -en

4
Middle English; Old English -an, case ending of n-stem nouns, as in naman oblique singular, and nominative and accusative plural of nama name; akin to n-stem forms in other IE languages, as in Latin nōmen, nōmin- name

-en

5
  1. a diminutive suffix: kitten; maiden.

Origin of -en

5
Middle English, Old English, from neuter of -en2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for -en

-en

1
suffix forming verbs
  1. cause to be; become; cause to haveblacken; heighten

Word Origin for -en

Old English -n-, as in fæst-n-ian to fasten, of common Germanic origin; compare Icelandic fastna

-en

2
suffix forming adjectives
  1. of; made of; resemblingashen; earthen; wooden

Word Origin for -en

Old English -en; related to Gothic -eins, Latin -īnus -ine 1
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

Word Origin and History for -en
1

word-forming element making verbs (e.g. darken, weaken) from adjectives or from nouns, from Old English -nian, from Proto-Germanic *-inojan (cf. Old Norse -na), from PIE adjectival suffix *-no-. Most active in Middle English.

2

suffix added to nouns to produce adjectives meaning "made of, of the nature of" (e.g. golden, oaken), corresponding to Latin -ine. Common in Old and Middle English, surviving words with it now are largely discarded in everyday use and the simple form of the noun serves as an adjective as well.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper