-ast Also -iast.
A person connected with a pursuit or activity.
[Greek nouns ending in -astēs, often from verbs in -azein.]
The most common example here is enthusiast (Greek enthousiastēs, a person inspired by a god). Others derived directly from Greek words include gymnast (Greek gumnastēs, trainer of athletes, from gumnazein, to exercise naked, the usual practice in classical Greece); pederast (Greek pais, paid-, boy); and iconoclast (Greek eikonoklastēs, breaker of images, from eikōn, image). Modern examples include cineaste (borrowed from French and retaining the French spelling) and ecdysiast (Greek ekdusis, shedding), a humorous term for a striptease performer.