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-ia

1.
a noun suffix having restricted application in various fields, as in names of diseases (malaria; anemia), place names (Italia; Romania), names of Roman feasts (Lupercalia), Latin or Latinizing plurals (Amphibia; insignia; Reptilia), and in other loanwords from Latin (militia).
Origin
< Neo-Latin, Latin, Greek, equivalent to -i- (formative or connective) or -ī- (Greek -ei-) + -a, feminine singular or neuter plural noun or adj. ending
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for -ia

-ia

suffix
1.
occurring in place names Albania, Columbia
2.
occurring in names of diseases and pathological disorders pneumonia, aphasia
3.
occurring in words denoting condition or quality utopia
4.
occurring in names of botanical genera acacia, poinsettia
5.
occurring in names of zoological classes Reptilia
6.
occurring in collective nouns borrowed from Latin marginalia, memorabilia, regalia
Word Origin
(for senses 1–4) New Latin, from Latin and Greek, suffix of feminine nouns; (for senses 5–6) from Latin, neuter plural suffix
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for -ia

word-forming element in names of countries, diseases, flowers, from Latin and Greek -ia, which forms abstract nouns of feminine gender. In paraphernalia, Mammalia, etc. it represents the Latin and Greek plural suffix of nouns in -ium or -ion.

Chinese forms country names by adding guo "country" to the stressed syllable of the place name, hence Meiguo "America," from mei, the stressed syllable of America (minus -r-, which does not exist in Chinese). Similarly Yingguo "England," Faguo "France." Continent names are similarly formed, with zhou "continent" (e.g. Meizhou "America (continent)," Feizhou "Africa," Ouzhou "Europe").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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-ia in Medicine

-ia 1
suff.
Disease; pathological or abnormal condition: anoxia.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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