O sufixo "-ISH" em inglês

Hello everyone,

I know some meanings of the -ish suffix, actually 2. I noticed that it is used to form adjectives that say what a person or thing is like, or nouns that say a country or region, whatever, comes from.

However, I was watching American Idol last week and I noticed that after an individual's audition and the judge's speech, Paula asked Simon what was his opinion, and he said: It was good-ish. (Kind of cheesy)

This word has to do with the first meaning that I mentioned above, but can this be ironic? Or can I use the -ish suffix to emphasize the idea that what I am saying it totally sarcastic? Which are the words that I can combine with it in order to not make silly mistakes? For example:

Ewww, what a beautiful-ish pigpen. Everyone knows a pigpen is untidy and ugly, but this -ish suffix that I combined with the beautiful adjective to express the ironic idea, in my point of view, sounds weird.

What do you think?

Thanks in advance.

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8 respostas
Posted in the wrong topic. ¬¬
Henry Cunha 3 18 190
O sufixo -ish é muitas vezes ligado a um substantivo para indicar "semelhante a":

a smallish man
girlish behaviour
boyish looks

Não é lá tão comum, mas também não tem tom irônico nesses exemplos acima.

murilo91 1 9
Concordo com o Henry, tem até uma musica do evanescence que usa isso.

"Suppressed by all my childish fears" (musica my immortal)

Got it!

Thank you guys.
anita 14
I have a question!!! I remember that a long time ago a teacher said I could use the suffix -ish with the times and then it would mean around that time. The example she used was elevenish, saying that it was around eleven. However, I'd like to know if I can use -ish for any of the times. They sound strange to me, so I'm in doubt. I'd appreciate your help :-)
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Henry Cunha 3 18 190
The meaning is right, and you could, I guess, but this is the kind of improvised speech that really works well for fluent speakers who know when to twist the rules. I would suggest sticking to "around two," etc., which always works, as opposed to such tongue-twisters as "twoish" or "threeish," etc. It does work better with some numbers ending in "n": sevenish, tenish, elevenish. Regards
dlr 1
I don't think there is any standard way of knowing exactly what -ish does to a word. On one hand, it can mean 'kind of'.

"What color was it?"
"It was green-ish blue."

On the other hand, it can be used sarcastically or for a soft let-down. It depends on the intonation.

Depending on how it is said, the following can mean different things..
"It was good...ish" (it was decent, but had some problems)
"It was GOODish" (it was clearly not very good)

"Ewww, what a beautiful-ish pigpen." - I don't think this works very well. Remember, the 'ish' doesn't directly negate the adjective... meaning that this example is not the same as saying 'Ewww, what a nasty pigpen'
anita 14
Thanks a lot, Henry and Dlr. I'll surely stick to "around...", sound better. However, it's so nice learning!