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See more synonyms for -ier on Thesaurus.com
  1. variant of -er1, usually in nouns designating trades: collier; clothier; furrier; glazier.
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Origin of -ier1

Middle English -ier(e), variant of -yer(e) (cf. -yer), equivalent to -i- v. stem ending + -ere -er1, probably reinforced by Old French -ier < Latin -ārius -ary (cf. soldier)


  1. a noun suffix occurring mainly in loanwords from French, often simply a spelling variant of -eer, with which it is etymologically identical (bombardier; brigadier; financier; grenadier); it is also found on an older and semantically more diverse group of loanwords that have stress on the initial syllable (barrier; courier; courtier; terrier). Recent loanwords from French may maintain the modern French pronunciation with loss of the final r sound (croupier; dossier; hotelier).
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Origin of -ier2

< French, Old French < Latin -ārius, -āria, -ārium -ary; cf. -aire, -eer, -er2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for -ier


suffix forming nouns
  1. a variant of -eer brigadier
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Word Origin

from Old English -ere -er 1 or (in some words) from Old French -ier, from Latin -ārius -ary
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 -ier

word-forming element indicating occupation, from French and Old French -ier, from Latin -arius (also see -er (1)). Nativized and used to form English words (glazier, hosier, etc.; also see -yer).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper