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Common Noun Suffixes

by Brian April 06, 2021

Languages are made up of building blocks. As we learn to put these blocks together in different ways, our language skills improve.

Suffixes are one of the building blocks of language. Suffixes are one or more letters that we put at the end of a word. Suffixes can make a word more accurate in its meaning. They can make a noun plural (eg. ‘s’), change the tense of a verb (eg. ‘ed’) or change the type of word (eg. ‘ly’).

In this blog we will look at noun suffixes. Becoming more familiar with noun suffixes will help you recognize word types when listening and reading. It will also help you learn more advanced vocabulary and assist you on your way to becoming an amazing English speaker. So let’s get started!

Some common noun suffixes are:

-ness         -ment         -ance         -ence

-ship          -hood         -ity              -ion

When we see these suffixes at the end of a word, it tells us that the word is a noun. This can be very helpful when reading. If you are reading and you come across a new word ending in one of these suffixes, it will tell you that the word is a noun. This may help you guess the meaning of the word without the need to stop reading and look the word up in a dictionary.

Now let’s take a closer look at these noun suffixes.

-ness

The suffix -ness changes an adjective into a noun. Here are some examples:

Adjective                Noun

tired                       tiredness

great                        greatness

weak                       weakness

sick                         sickness

happy                     happiness

warmhearted        warmheartedness

-ment

The suffix -ment changes a verb into a noun. Here are some examples:

Verb                Noun

enjoy                enjoyment

encourage        encouragement

govern               government

disappoint       disappointment

-ance

The suffix -ance changes a verb into a noun. Here are some examples:

Verb                Noun

comply            compliance

annoy               annoyance

appear             appearance

perform           performance

deliver              deliverance

-ence

The suffix -ence generally changes a verb into a noun. Here are some examples:

Verb                Noun

differ            difference

depend          dependence

reside            residence

indulge         indulgence

persist          persistence

-ship

The suffix -ship generally changes a noun  into another noun. Here are some examples:

Verb                Noun

member       membership

friend            friendship

apprentice   apprenticeship

workman     workmanship

dictator        dictatorship

-hood

The suffix -hood generally changes a noun into another noun. Here are some examples:

Noun                Noun

child               childhood

adult                adulthood

brother           brotherhood

sister               sisterhood

neighbour      neighbourhood

-ity

The suffix -ity  generally changes an adjective  into a noun. Here are some examples:

Adjective                Noun

sincere                  sincerity

rare                        rarity

pure                       purity

scarce                    scarcity

modern                 modernity

-ion

The suffix -ion  generally changes a verb into a noun. Here are some examples:

Verb                Noun

situate          situation

create            creation

opt                 option

educate        education

recognize     recognition

Test Yourself

5

1 / 7

A suffix is added to the _______ of a word.

2 / 7

-ion, -ence, -ity  are examples of _______ suffixes

3 / 7

She has many happy memories of her child____.

4 / 7

Money can't buy you happi_____.

5 / 7

I'm afraid I couldn't open the attach______.

6 / 7

She is admired for her sincer___.

7 / 7

My member_____ of the tennis club has expired.

Your score is

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