Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • suffix One that is associated with, participates in, makes, or does: songster.
  • suffix One that is: youngster.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • suffix Someone who is, or who is associated with, or who does something specified.
  • suffix A diminutive appended to a person's name.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • A suffix denoting the agent (originally a woman), especially a person who does something with skill or as an occupation; as in spinster (originally, a woman who spins), songster, baxter (= bakester), youngster.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A termination denoting occupation, as in maltster, gamester, spinster, songster, etc.
  • n. An abbreviation of sterling.

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old English -estre, female agent suff.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English -ster, -estere, from Old English -estre ("-ster", feminine agent suffix), from Proto-Germanic *-istrijōn, *-astrijōn, from Proto-Indo-European *-as-tar- (suffix). Cognate with Old High German -astria, Middle Low German -ester, Dutch -ster.

Examples

Comments

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  • Hah!

    January 11, 2013

  • Just found out that the suffix -ster was originally "used to refer to woman doing a job normally performed by a man" as the GNU Webster's 1913 Dictionary definition says:

    http://www.wordorigins.org/index.php/site/comments/sex_neutral_terms/

    This gives Webster itself a whole new meaning.

    January 11, 2013

  • suffix // add to noun or noun(ish) wordies! ;)

    April 28, 2009