a noun suffix having restricted application in various fields, as in names of diseases (malaria; anemia), place names (Italia; Romania), names of Roman feasts (Lupercalia), Latin or Latinizing plurals (Amphibia; insignia; Reptilia), and in other loanwords from Latin (militia).
Origin of -ia
< New Latin,Latin,Greek, equivalent to -i- (formative or connective) or -ī- (Greek-ei-) + -a, feminine singular or neuter plural noun or adj. ending
word-forming element in names of countries, diseases, flowers, from Latin and Greek -ia, which forms abstract nouns of feminine gender. In paraphernalia, Mammalia, etc. it represents the Latin and Greek plural suffix of nouns in -ium or -ion.
Chinese forms country names by adding guo "country" to the stressed syllable of the place name, hence Meiguo "America," from mei, the stressed syllable of America (minus -r-, which does not exist in Chinese). Similarly Yingguo "England," Faguo "France." Continent names are similarly formed, with zhou "continent" (e.g. Meizhou "America (continent)," Feizhou "Africa," Ouzhou "Europe").