Chapter 16

SOME LATIN ADJECTIVES1 Icon

January 31, 2022
NOUN ADJECTIVE
youth juvenile
sugar saccharine
rosy rosy
brick laterite
iron ferrous, ferric
copper cuprous, cupric
rotary rotarian
beauty cosmetic
village (good sense) rural
village (bad sense) rustic
snake, serpent serpentine (zigzag is the English adjective)
sound acoustic
world, earth mundane
ether ethereal
air aerial
light luminous
space spatial
touch tactual
vision visual
voice vocal
time temporal
lion leonine
elephant elephantitis2
nose nasal
five [elements] quinquelemental
oil lubricant
husband/wife (pair) conjugal
king royal
salt saline (salty is the English adjective)
flower floral
egg oval
fish piscal (fishy is the English adjective)
flesh carnal
heat thermal
life vital
nerve [system] neurological
shelter sanctual
help auxilary
boat naval
God divine
hair capillary
head capital
star astral, asteric
gas pneumatic (e.g., pneumatic power; gaseous is the English adjective)
fire igneous (e.g., igneous rock)
pad3 pedal, pedestrial (pedestrian – noun)
side lateral
day diurnal
night nocturnal
milk, lactose lactic, lactorial
cat feline
dog canine
gold4 auric
lead plumbic
natrum natric
blood sanguine, sanguinary
hope sanguine
sea marine
river riverine
sediment sedimentary, residual
father paternal
mother maternal
brother fraternal
town, city urban
cow vaccine
ox, bull bovine
sheep quarantine5
ear (in the sense of physicality) auricular
ear (in the sense of faculty) audible
ear (in the sense of inference) acoustic
eye (in the sense of physicality) optical (e.g., “He is suffering from optical trouble.”
eye (in the sense of faculty) ocular (e.g., ocular proof
eye (in the sense of inference) visible
N.B.: The English adjective of Wales is Welsh; the adjective of lathi is lethal, which is Indian English; and the adjective of white is wheat, which is old English.
ADJECTIVE LATIN ADJECTIVE
all-round radical
all-knowing omniscient
all-powerful omnipotent
moving everywhere omnibus
old ancient
underground subterranean
equal in side equilateral
equal in balance equivalent
equal in weight, mass equipoised
equal in number equinumeral
two double
grass-eating graminivorous
insect-eating insectivorous, pestivorous
meat-eating carnivorous
fish-eating piscivorous
long-lasting chronic
date-wise chronological
(1) Many of the entries here represent instances where the adjective form of a classical word has entered the English language, but the noun form has not entered the English language or has not remained in it. For example, the Latinate adjective mundane remains in the English language, but the noun mundus either has not entered the language or does not remain.

(2) -itis is an old adjectival suffix. –Eds.

(3) Originally meaning “foot”, as it still does in the case of animals. –Eds.

(4) Golden [in the sense of “made of gold”] is bad English. A gold ring means a ring made of gold. A golden ring means a ring whose colour is like that of gold.

(5) In ancient times some towns took special steps to check the [spread] of disease coming from sheep. That is why even nowadays we use the term quarantine period for post-disease care.

CHAPTER 17: DIMINUTIVES

In order to create diminutives in English, suffixes such as the following (-let, -kin, -et, -ock, -ling, -ule, etc.) are used.

NOUN DIMINUTIVE
hill hillock
book booklet
duck duckling
river rivulet
goose gosling
arm armlet1
leaf leaflet
ankle anklet1
cut cutlet
man mankin
helm helmet
globe globule
grain granule
(1) Small objects related to the arm or ankle. –Eds.