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Webster 1913 Edition


-ness

-ness

.
[AS.
-ness
,
-nyss
,
-nys
; akin to OS.
-nissi
,
nussi
, D.
-nis
, OHG.
-nissa
,
-nassī
,
-nussī
, G.
-nis
,
-niss
, Goth.
-inasus
.]
A suffix used to form abstract nouns expressive of
quality
or
state
;
as, good
ness
, great
ness
.

Definition 2021


-ness

-ness

See also: ness and Ness

English

Alternative forms

Suffix

-ness

  1. Appended to adjectives to form nouns meaning "the state of being(the adjective)", "the quality of being(the adjective)", or "the measure of being(the adjective)".
    calmness calm
    darkness dark
    kindness kind
    oneness one
  2. Appended to words of other parts of speech to form nouns (often nonce words or terms in philosophy) meaning the state/quality/measure of the idea represented by these words.
    thatness that
    treeness tree

Usage notes

If adjective ends in -y, then this changes to -i- when -ness is suffixed. This occurs both when the -y is the suffix -y (having the quality of), as in messmessymessiness (hence -y-i-), but also in other cases, as in comelycomeliness.

Synonyms

Derived terms

  • Category:English words suffixed with -ness

Translations