From Middle English -ish, -isch, from Old English -isc (“-ish”, suffix), from Proto-Germanic *-iskaz (“-ish”), from Proto-Indo-European *-iskos. Cognate with Dutch -s; German -isch; whence Dutch -isch; Norwegian, Danish, and Swedish -isk or -sk; Lithuanian -iškas; and the Ancient Greek diminutive suffix -ίσκος (-ískos).
- (appended to many kinds of words) Typical or similar to.
Her face had a girlish charm.
- (appended to adjectives) Somewhat.
Her face had a greenish tinge.
1935, George Goodchild, chapter 5, in Death on the Centre Court:
- By one o'clock the place was choc-a-bloc. […] The restaurant was packed, and the promenade between the two main courts and the subsidiary courts was thronged with healthy-looking youngish people, drawn to the Mecca of tennis from all parts of the country.
- (appended to numbers, especially times and ages) About, approximately.
We arrived at tennish; We arrived tennish.(Sometime around ten.)
I couldn't tell his precise age, but he was fiftyish.
- (appended to roots denoting names of nations or regions) Of a nationality, place, language or similar association with something.
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.
- -ish (language)
- Added to names of places or peoples to denote the language spoken in that place or by that people.
- -self (emphatic)
- Added to prepositional pronouns to add emphasis (not to create a reflexive pronoun).