a suffix used to form adjectives from nouns, with the sense of “belonging to” (British; Danish; English; Spanish ); “after the manner of,” “having the characteristics of,” “like” (babyish; girlish; mulish ); “addicted to,” “inclined or tending to” (bookish; freakish ); “near or about” (fiftyish; sevenish ).
a suffix used to form adjectives from other adjectives, with the sense of “somewhat,” “rather” (oldish; reddish; sweetish ).

Middle English; Old English -isc; cognate with German -isch, Gothic -isks, Greek -iskos; akin to -esque

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a suffix occurring in i -stem verbs borrowed from French: ravish.

< French -iss-, extended stem of verbs with infinitives in -irLatin -isc-, in inceptive verbs

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World English Dictionary
suffix forming adjectives
1.  of or belonging to a nationality or group: Scottish
2.  derogatory often having the manner or qualities of; resembling: slavish; prudish; boyish
3.  somewhat; approximately: yellowish; sevenish
4.  concerned or preoccupied with: bookish
[Old English -isc; related to German -isch, Greek -iskos]

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Word Origin & History

adj. suffix, from O.E. -isc, common Gmc. (cf. O.N. -iskr, Ger. -isch, Goth. -isks), cognate with Gk. dim. suffix -iskos. Colloquially attached to hours to denote approximation, 1916.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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