Go to 'thermo-' entry Go to 'dino-' entry Go to 'chondro-' entry Go to 'aero-' entry Go to '-logy' entry Go to 'thaumato-' entry Go to 'nano-' entry Go to '-sophy' entry Go to 'bucco-' entry Go to '-ism' entry Go to '-lysis' entry Go to 'galacto-' entry Go to '-anthropy' entry Go to 'pneumo-' entry Go to '-ploitation' entry Go to '-lithic' entry Go to '-sepalous' entry Go to 'onco-' entry Go to '-parous' entry Go to 'dermato-' entry Go to 'multi-' entry Go to 'dodeca-' entry Go to '-zoon' entry Go to 'vermi-' entry Go to 'crystallo-' entry Go to 'biblio-' entry Go to 'eco-' entry Go to 'juxta-' entry Go to 'facio-' entry
Affixes: the building blocks of English
Affixes: the building blocks of English

-ock

Forming nouns.

[Old English -uc, -oc.]

This suffix is now only historical. In some cases it had a diminutive sense, but that has largely been lost—the only one remaining is hillock, a small hill. Other examples are buttock, originally a small butt, in the sense of backside, and bullock, literally little bull, a castrated male animal raised for beef. Several terms for animals may originally have been diminutives, though the evidence is unclear: dunnock, the hedge sparrow, perhaps ‘the little dun-coloured (bird)’, and haddock and pollock, two species of fish. Two British dismissive slang terms may include it, though their origins are uncertain: slummock, a dirty, untidy, or slovenly person; wazzock, a stupid or annoying person. Pillock, however, probably derives from pillicock, an old name for the penis. Other words in this ending come from a variety of sources, seemingly unconnected either with the suffix or each other: bannock, a round, flat loaf; futtock, each of the middle timbers of a ship's frame; hassock, a cushion for kneeling on in church; hammock comes through Spanish from Taino hamaka with the ending altered in imitation of -ock.

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