, occurring originally in French and Latin loanwords ( pleasant; constant; servant )
and productive in English on this model
has the general sense “characterized by or serving in the capacity of” that named by the stem ( ascendant; pretendant ),
especially in the formation of nouns denoting human agents in legal actions or other formal procedures ( tenant; defendant; applicant; contestant ).
In technical and commercial coinages, -ant,
is a suffix of nouns denoting impersonal physical agents ( propellant; lubricant; deodorant ).
In general, -ant,
can be added only to bases of Latin origin, with a very few exceptions, as coolant.
< Latin -ant-,
present participle stem of verbs in -āre;
in many words < French -ant
< Latin -ant-
); akin to Middle English, Old English -and-, -end-,
present participle suffix
is always a great word to know.
So is callithumpian. Does it mean: