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From Proto-Indo-European *-trih₂, from *-tḗr. Cognate with the Sanskrit suffix -त्री (-trī) as in जनित्री (janitrī, mother); compare genetrix.

The origin of the medial -c- is unknown. Compare Proto-Slavic *-ica with the same element, and also with secondary thematicization.



-trīx f (genitive -trīcis); third declension

  1. -ess, -rix; used to form a feminine agent noun
  2. (often poetic or derogatory) Used to form feminine versions of adjectives (in the same way as above), often with a poetic quality and/or a negative connotation

Usage notes[edit]

The suffix -trīx is added to a verb to create a third-declension feminine form of an agent noun.

cantrīx (female singer); feminine counterpart of cantor (male singer), from canō (I sing)
tōnstrīx (female hair cutter); feminine counterpart of tōnsor (male hair cutter), from tondeō (I shear, shave)
meretrīx (prostitute", lit. "she who earns), from mereō (I merit, deserve, earn)


Third-declension noun.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative -trīx -trīcēs
Genitive -trīcis -trīcum
Dative -trīcī -trīcibus
Accusative -trīcem -trīcēs
Ablative -trīce -trīcibus
Vocative -trīx -trīcēs

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


  • Catalan: -triu
  • English: -rix, -trix, -tress, -ess (partially)
  • French: -trice
  • Italian: -trice
  • Portuguese: -triz
  • Spanish: -triz