Commonly Used Suffixes in Igbo Language

Affixes can be prefixes or suffixes. Suffixes in Igbo are usually verbs/preposition/conjunctions that you can put at the end of another verb and prefixes are added to the beginning of the verb.

Adding suffixes to the end of your Igbo verbs or prefixes to the beginning of your Igbo verb usually comes in handy when the Igbo verb you are using is stripped down to its most simplest form and you need to add a suffix to the end/prefix to the beginning of it to add more useful meaning. You can even combine multiple suffixes at the end/prefixes at the start of your verb depending on the meaning you want to convey. The type of prefixes/suffixes you use in Igbo will depend on your dialect.

Some examples in English of changing the meaning of the verb with a “suffix”:

We will come. -> We will come again.

I speak Yoruba. -> I also speak Yoruba.

She is cooking -> She is done cooking.

Now, examples of the above in Igbo using suffixes:

Any ga-abịa. -> Any ga-abịakwasị.

Ana m asụ Yoruba. ->  Ana m asụkwa Yoruba.

O na-esi nri. -> O na-esicha nri.

 

Note: Check out the Igbo common verbs lesson to look at other verbs you can change with suffixes.

List of Commonly used Suffixes you can add to the end of your Igbo verbs:

act on (partially) – cha

again – gharia / kwasị / nwụ

against – ba/be/ do

also – kwa

at – ba/be

away –  pụ 

break – bo

can ( do the *verb* ) – nwu / li

continually – sịsị

done – cha

down/downward – da / da ala / tu

enough/get enough (of the *verb*)/fulfilled/satisfied – juo

finish/finished – cha

first (do the *verb* first) – du

for – ta

forget (used with thinking verbs) – zọ

from – be

in place of – chi

increasing – wa

just – raa

more – nari

near – keta

on – ba/be

off – pu / p

out – pu / pụ

so much (of this *verb* that something will happen/happened) – kata

still – li / lị

stop – dụ / debe / dobe

together – kọ

to / towards – ta / kwu

up/upward – lie/ lie elu / go

used to (do the *verb*) – bu 

with – gba

 

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