a suffix used to form adjectives from nouns, with the sense of “belonging to” (British; Danish; English; Spanish); “after the manner of,” “having the characteristics of,” “like” (babyish; girlish; mulish); “addicted to,” “inclined or tending to” (bookish; freakish); “near or about” (fiftyish; sevenish).
a suffix used to form adjectives from other adjectives, with the sense of “somewhat,” “rather” (oldish; reddish; sweetish).

Origin of -ish

Middle English; Old English -isc; cognate with German -isch, Gothic -isks, Greek -iskos; akin to -esque

Words nearby -ish

Definition for -ish (2 of 2)


a suffix occurring in i-stem verbs borrowed from French: ravish.

Origin of -ish

< French -iss-, extended stem of verbs with infinitives in -ir ≪ Latin -isc-, in inceptive verbs
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British Dictionary definitions for -ish


suffix forming adjectives

of or belonging to a nationality or groupScottish
often derogatory having the manner or qualities of; resemblingslavish; prudish; boyish
somewhat; approximatelyyellowish; sevenish
concerned or preoccupied withbookish

Word Origin for -ish

Old English -isc; related to German -isch, Greek -iskos
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