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

-ola

Diminutives; trade names; humorous or dismissive formations.

[Latin words ending in -ola or -ula.]

A few words in this ending come directly from Latin, usually with a diminutive sense: areola (Latin, diminutive of area, area), a small circular area, in particular the ring of pigmented skin surrounding a nipple; cupola (Latin cupula, small cask or burying vault, diminutive of cupa, cask), a rounded dome forming or adorning a roof or ceiling; pergola (Latin pergula, projecting roof, from pergere, come or go forward), an archway in a garden or park.

This diminutive sense may have been the inspiration for various US trade names (Pianola, a mechanical piano; Victrola, a type of phonograph; Moviola, a type of film editing machine; Granola, a kind of breakfast cereal), mostly now generic or obsolete.

From the 1920s in the US the ending began to be added to a variety of nouns and adjectives to make humorous slang terms. Many of these were only temporary, but two of several that have survived are boffola (from slang boff, a hearty laugh), a joke or a line in a script meant to get a laugh, and crapola (from crap, excrement), total rubbish. One that has become standard English is payola, the practice of bribing someone to use their influence or position to promote a particular product, from which have evolved drugola, payola in the form of drugs, and plugola, payment to get favourable mention or display (a plug) for a product in a film or on radio or television. The ending is mainly limited to the US.

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