AskDefine | Define desinence

Extensive Definition

In grammar, a suffix or ending is an affix which is placed at the end of a word. Common examples are case endings, which indicate the grammatical case of nouns or adjectives, and verb endings, which form the conjugation of verbs.
Suffixes can carry grammatical information (inflectional suffixes), or lexical information (derivational suffixes). An inflectional suffix is sometimes called a desinence.
Some examples from English:
Girls, where the suffix -s marks the plural;
He makes, where suffix -s marks the third person singular present tense;
He closed, where the suffix -d marks the past tense.
A large number of endings are found in many synthetic languages such as Czech, German, Finnish, Latin, Hungarian, Russian, etc.
Suffixes used in English frequently have Greek, French or Latin origins.

Inflectional suffixes

Inflection changes grammatical properties of a word within its syntactic category. In the example:
The weather forecaster said it would clear today, but it hasn't cleared at all.
the suffix -ed inflects the root-word clear to indicate past tense.
Some inflectional suffixes in present day English:

Derivational suffixes

In the example:
"The weather forecaster said it would be clear today, but I can't see clearly at all"
the suffix -ly modifies the root-word clear from an adjective into an adverb. Derivation can also form a semantically distinct word within the same syntactic category. In this example:
"The weather forecaster said it would be a clear day today, but I think it's more like clearish!"
the suffix -ish modifies the root-word clear, changing its meaning to "clear, but not very clear".
Some derivational suffixes in present day English:
  • -ize/-ise
  • -fy
  • -ly
  • -able
  • -ful
  • -ness
  • -ism
  • -ment
  • -ist
  • -al
desinence in Guarani: Mbiti
desinence in Breton: Lostger
desinence in Bulgarian: Наставка
desinence in Catalan: Sufix
desinence in Czech: Sufix
desinence in Danish: Suffiks
desinence in German: Suffix
desinence in Estonian: Sufiks
desinence in Spanish: Sufijo
desinence in Esperanto: Sufikso
desinence in French: Affixe#Place_des_affixes
desinence in Galician: Sufixo
desinence in Hindi: प्रत्यय
desinence in Indonesian: Sufiks
desinence in Icelandic: Viðskeyti
desinence in Italian: Suffisso
desinence in Latin: Suffixum
desinence in Macedonian: Наставка
desinence in Dutch: Suffix
desinence in Japanese: 接尾辞
desinence in Norwegian: Suffiks
desinence in Norwegian Nynorsk: Affiks#Suffiks
desinence in Low German: Suffix
desinence in Polish: Przyrostek
desinence in Portuguese: Sufixo
desinence in Quechua: K'askaq
desinence in Simple English: Suffix
desinence in Finnish: Pääte (morfologia)
desinence in Swedish: Suffix
desinence in Volapük: Poyümot
desinence in Chinese: 後綴
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