Russian affixes in Israeli Hebrew


Affix function number of borrowed affixes


Information and examples are from Bolozkoy (1999). The following six affixes are identified by Uri Tadmor (personal communication, 2011) as productive, and as having entered Hebrew from Russian, although they may be ultimately French, and may also exist in English, such as ‑er (from French ‑aire). Bolozkoy (1999) studies in detail the productivity of these affixes (in dictionaries, corpora, and with “productivity test” involving native speaker judgments), providing also information on the extent to which they are used with native stems. See also Cohen and Laks (2012) who describe some of the same borrowed affixes.


4 agent noun formation suffixes

‑nik ‘agent noun’, e.g. núdnik ‘pest’, kibúcnik ‘kibbutz member’, klumnik ‘good‑for‑nothing’ (Schwarzwald 1998: 271)

tšik ‘diminutive; doer’ politírtšik ‘furniture polisher’ (from politum ‘polish’), xaltúrištšik ‘one who does side‑jobs’ (xaltúra ‘side‑job, non‑serious Job’), katántšik ‘tiny’ (from katan ‘small’), šaméntšik ‘chubby’ (from samen ‘fat’)

‑ist ‘agent, activist’ (Schwarzwald 1998: 271), see also (Bolozky 2007: 299–300)

‑er ‘agent noun formation’, e.g. širyoner ‘soldier in armor’ (from širyon ‘armor’) (Bolozky 1999: 199)


2 abstract noun formation suffixes

ológya (according to Uri Tadmor only comically, such as xupológya ‘marital‑canopy studies’, xoxmológya ‘smart‑alec‑ness’)

‑izm, e.g. bitxonízm ‘emphasis on security’, bicu’izm ‘no‑nonsense, hands‑on approach’ (Bolozky 1999: 111, 224)