What is the suffix of -er?


A suffix is one or a set of letters that you add to the end of a word that changes its meaning. In the case of –er, there are actually several meanings that it has.

  • Added to the end of a verb to show a person’s occupation or job
  • Added to the end of a place (which can either be a proper noun name or a generic place) to show where someone is from or where they live
  • Added to the end of an adjective to describe something about that person


Some examples of this -er suffix are words like:

  • Painter, runner, dancer, driver, teacher, manager, videographer, etc. (These all show occupations)
  • Villager, southerner, New Yorker, Icelander, etc. (These all show where someone comes from)
  • Six footer, fiver, kung fu master, tenner, etc. (These all tell something about the person)

A BIG List of Prefixes and Suffixes and Their Meanings

Just some small corrections;

master is not a word with an -er suffix; it comes from the Latin magister.

six footer, fiver, tenner are not (generally) used to refer to people. In this case, -er is a suffix added to words formed from a number or measurement to denote that the word is based on that number.
For example, the fairly common (in American English) grader (grade + er) meaning “student in a particular grade”, such as “first-grader“.

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