Student Area|Teacher Area
 

Suffixes of meaning and word class

Aim:
Here is a list of commonly used suffixes. Knowing these suffixes will help you to:

(1) work out the meaning of words

  • -able / -ible when added to a verb, mean ‘can be done’; e.g. correctable, edible, unmistakable
  • -ise / -ize are used to make verbs from nouns, and mean to change something or to go through a process; e.g. accessorise, apologise, initialise, synchronise
  • -ology implies the study of a subject; e.g. biology, sociology, psychology
  • -ness is used to make nouns from adjectives, and means to be something; e.g. airsickness, assertiveness, blindness, cleanliness

(2) recognise word class

  • -ment (nouns) e.g. development, environment
  • -ity (nouns) e.g. responsibility, prosperity, stability, stupidity
  • -hood (abstract nouns) e.g. childhood, manhood
  • -ship (abstract nouns) e.g. hardship
  • -ive (adjectives) e.g. creative, alternative, comprehensive, qualitative
  • -less (adjectives) e.g. careless, brainless, clueless, endless
  • -al (adjectives and nouns) e.g. comical, cultural, historical, sexual, anal
  • -ify (verbs) e.g. amplify, beautify, clarify, dehumidify, intensify

Exercise
Complete the words in the boxes:

  1. Bottled water is but tap water is not.

     

    Answer:
    drinkable

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix of meaning. It means the water can be drunk by people.
     

  2. All the assignments are due soon and it is difficult to  them.

     

    Answer:
    prioritise (British English) / prioritize (American English)

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix of meaning. It means to go through a process of giving something a priority.
     

  3. My grandmother is very forgetful. Yes, my great-aunt also suffers from .
     

     

    Answer:
    forgetfulness

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix of meaning. It means to be forgetful.
     

  4. Most of the mistakes can be forgiven. However, these basic errors are .

     

    Answers:
    unforgivable

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix of meaning. It means that these mistakes cannot be forgiven.
     

  5. is a great responsibility.
     

     

    Answers:
    Parenthood

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. It means being a parent, and is a noun.
     

  6. The factory has been very this year.

     

    Answers:
    productive

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Productive is an adjective.
     

  7. Democracy is fundamental to good .

     

    Answer:
    government / governance

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Government is a noun.
     

  8. The court was unable to determine the of the property.

     

    Answer:
    ownership

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Ownership is an abstract noun.

     

  9. Please  all the students concerned about the room change.

     

    Answer:
    notify

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Notify is a verb.
     

  10. It is difficult to explain the of a singer who cannot actually sing!

     

    Answers:
    popularity

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Popularity is a noun.
     

  11. If you keep buying designer label goods you will soon be .

     

    Answers:
    penniless

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Penniless is a noun.
     

  12. Please wait for me in the hall of the airport.

     

    Answers:
    arrival / arrivals

    Explanation:
    This is a word with a suffix showing word class. Arrival can be a noun and an adjective; e.g. "I'll see you on my arrival." (noun), and "Where is the arrival gate?" (adjective).

  13. Your total score is:

 

Last updated on: Monday, March 26, 2012