-ic

1. a suffix forming adjectives from other parts of speech, occurring originally in Greek and Latin loanwords (metallic; poetic; archaic; public) and, on this model, used as an adjective-forming suffix with the particular senses "having some characteristics of" (opposed to the simple attributive use of the base noun) (balletic; sophomoric); "in the style of" (Byronic; Miltonic); "pertaining to a family of peoples or languages" (Finnic; Semitic; Turkic).
2. Chem. a suffix, specialized in opposition to -ous, used to show the higher of two valences: ferric chloride.
3. a noun suffix occurring chiefly in loanwords from Greek, where such words were originally adjectival (critic; magic; music).
[ME -ic, -ik < L -icus; in many words repr. the cognate Gk -ikos (directly or through L); in some words r. -ique < F < L -icus]

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Universalium. 2010.

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