- a suffix of nouns, often concrete, denoting an action or resulting state (abridgment; refreshment), a product (fragment), or means (ornament).
Origin of -ment
- indicating state, condition, or qualityenjoyment
- indicating the result or product of an actionembankment
- indicating process or actionmanagement
Word Origin and History for -ment
suffix forming nouns, originally from French and representing Latin -mentum, which was added to verb stems sometimes to represent the result or product of the action. French inserts an -e- between the verbal root and the suffix (e.g. commenc-e-ment from commenc-er; with verbs in ir, -i- is inserted instead (e.g. sent-i-ment from sentir). Used with English verb stems from 16c. (e.g. merriment, which also illustrates the habit of turning -y to -i- before this suffix).