Pronunciation: (en),[key] —n. 1. the letter N, n. 2. Also called nut.Print.half of the width of an em.
—adj. Print.having the area of an en quad or the length of an en: en quad; en dash.
a prefix occurring originally in loanwords from French and productive in English on this model, forming verbs with the general sense “to cause (a person or thing) to be in” the place, condition, or state named by the stem; more specifically, “to confine in or place on” (enshrine; enthrone; entomb); “to cause to be in” (enslave; entrust; enrich; encourage; endear); “to restrict” in the manner named by the stem, typically with the additional sense “on all sides, completely” (enwind; encircle; enclose; entwine). This prefix is also attached to verbs in order to make them transitive, or to give them a transitive marker if they are already transitive (enkindle; enliven; enshield; enface). Also,before labial consonants,em-1. Cf. be-, in-2.
a prefix meaning “within, in,” occurring in loanwords from Greek: energy; enthusiasm.Also,before labial consonants,em-2.
a suffix formerly used to form transitive and intransitive verbs from adjectives (fasten; harden; sweeten), or from nouns (heighten; lengthen; strengthen).
a suffix used to form adjectives of source or material from nouns: ashen; golden; oaken.
a suffix used to mark the past participle in many strong and some weak verbs: taken; proven.
a suffix used in forming the plural of some nouns: brethren; children; oxen.