Definition of -ish

1 : of, relating to, or being chiefly in adjectives indicating nationality or ethnic group Finnish
2a : characteristic of boyish Pollyannaish
b : inclined or liable to bookish qualmish
3a : having a touch or trace of purplish : somewhat darkish
b : having the approximate age of fortyish

History and Etymology for -ish

Middle English, from Old English -isc; akin to Old High German -isc, -ish, Greek -iskos, diminutive suffix

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More Definitions for -ish

English Language Learners Definition of -ish

: almost or approximately
\ ish\

Kids Definition of -ish

1 : of, relating to, or being Finnish
2 : characteristic of boyish
3 : somewhat purplish
4 : about (as an age or a time)

More from Merriam-Webster on -ish

Spanish Central: Translation of -ish

Comments on -ish

What made you want to look up -ish? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to wander slowly or to speak indistinctly

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