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See also: ern, ERN, and Ern



In form, from Middle English -ern(e), -ren, -ron (northern(e), northron, so(u)thern(e), sothron, etc), from Old English -erne (norþerne, etc), from Proto-Germanic *-r- (probably from rebracketing of *nurþrōnijaz etc) + *-ōnijaz, whence also Old High German -rōni, Old Saxon -rōni, Old Norse -rœnn / Old Norse -œnn. In practice, possibly a back-formation from northern, southern, etc.

(Contrast the -ern in hāligern, etc, which is related to ærn (place).)



  1. (nonstandard outside fossilized words) Added to the names of directions to form adjectives.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]


Old English[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From adjectival use of -ærn (noun suffix denoting location), from ærn (place).



  1. Suffix meaning "a place".
    hāliġ (holy) + ‎-ern → ‎hāligern (sanctuary, holy place)

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Variant of -erne.



  1. Suffix meaning "toward a place"; alternative form of -erne