a suffix of nouns, often pejorative, denoting one concerned with (hireling; underling), or diminutive (princeling; duckling).

Words nearby -ling

Origin of -ling

Middle English, Old English; cognate with German -ling, Old Norse -lingr, Gothic -lings; see -le, -ing1

Definition for -ling (2 of 2)


an adverbial suffix expressing direction, position, state, etc.: darkling; sideling.

Origin of -ling

Middle English, Old English; adv. use of gradational variant lang long1
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British Dictionary definitions for -ling (1 of 2)


suffix forming nouns

often derogatory a person or thing belonging to or associated with the group, activity, or quality specifiednestling; underling
used as a diminutiveduckling

Word Origin for -ling

Old English -ling, of Germanic origin; related to Icelandic -lingr, Gothic -lings

British Dictionary definitions for -ling (2 of 2)


suffix forming adverbs

in a specified condition, manner, or directiondarkling; sideling

Word Origin for -ling

Old English -ling, adverbial suffix
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