noun, plural Y’s or Ys, y’s or ys.
- the 25th letter of the English alphabet, a semivowel.
- any spoken sound represented by the letter Y or y, as in yet, city, or rhythm.
- something having the shape of a Y.
- a written or printed representation of the letter Y or y.
- a device, as a printer’s type, for reproducing the letter Y or y.
- an unknown quantity.
- (in Cartesian coordinates) the y-axis.
- yen1(def 1).
- the Y, Informal. the YMCA, YWCA, YMHA, or YWHA.
- the 25th in order or in a series, or, when I is omitted, the 24th.
- (sometimes lowercase) the medieval Roman numeral for 150.Compare Roman numerals.
- (sometimes lowercase) Electricity. admittance.
- Chemistry. yttrium.
- Biochemistry. tyrosine.
- a prefix occurring in certain obsolete words (ywis) and especially in archaic past participles: yclad.
- a native English suffix of adjectives meaning “characterized by or inclined to” the substance or action of the word or stem to which the suffix is attached: juicy; grouchy; rumbly; dreamy. Sometimes used to mean “allowing, fostering, or bringing about” the specified action: sippy.
- a noun-forming suffix with a variety of functions in contemporary English, added to monosyllabic bases to create words that are almost always informal. Its earliest use, probably still productive, was to form endearing or familiar names or common nouns from personal names, other nouns, and adjectives (Billy; Susie; birdie; doggie; granny; sweetie; tummy). The hypocoristic feature is absent in recent coinages, however, which are simply informal and sometimes pejorative (boonies; cabby; groupie; hippy; looie; Okie; preemie; preppy; rookie). Another function of -y2 (-ie) is to form from adjectives nouns that denote exemplary or extreme instances of the quality named by the adjective (baddie; biggie; cheapie; toughie), sometimes focusing on a restricted, usually unfavorable sense of the adjective (sharpie; sickie; whitey). A few words in which the informal character of -y2 (-ie) has been lost are now standard in formal written English (goalie; movie).
- a suffix of various origins used in the formation of action nouns from verbs (inquiry), also found in other abstract nouns: carpentry; infamy.
- yard; yards.
- year; years.
noun plural y’s, Y’s or Ys
- the 25th letter of the modern English alphabet
- a speech sound represented by this letter, in English usually a semivowel, as in yawn, or a vowel, as in symbol or shy
- something shaped like a Y
- (in combination)a Y-cross
- the y- axis or a coordinate measured along the y- axis in a Cartesian coordinate system
- an algebraic variable
- any unknown, unspecified, or variable factor, number, person, or thing
- chem yttrium
- YMCA or YWCA
suffix forming adjectives
- (from nouns) characterized by; consisting of; filled with; relating to; resemblingsunny; sandy; smoky; classy
- (from verbs) tending to; acting or existing as specifiedleaky; shiny
- denoting smallness and expressing affection and familiaritya doggy; a granny; Jamie
- a person or thing concerned with or characterized by beinga groupie; a fatty
suffix forming nouns
- (from verbs) indicating the act of doing what is indicated by the verbal elementinquiry
- (esp with combining forms of Greek, Latin, or French origin) indicating state, condition, or qualitygeography; jealousy
a late-developing letter in English. Called ipsilon in German, upsilon in Greek, the English name is of obscure origin. The sound at the beginning of yard, yes, yield, etc. is from Old English words with initial g- as in got and y- as in yet, which were considered the same sound and often transcribed as a character that looks something like 3 (but with a flat top and lower on the line of text), known as yogh. The system was altered by French scribes, who brought over the continental use of -g- and from the early 1200s used -y- and sometimes -gh- to replace 3. There’s a good, in-depth discussion of yogh here. As short for YMCA, YWCA, YMHA first recorded 1915. perfective prefix, in y-clept, etc.; a deliberate archaism, introduced by Spenser and his imitators, representing an authentic Middle English prefix, from Old English ge-, originally meaning “with, together” but later a completive or perfective element, from Proto-Germanic *ga-. It is still living in German and Dutch ge-, and survives, disguised, in some English words (e.g. alike, aware, handiwork). 3suffix in pet proper names (e.g. Johnny, Kitty), first recorded in Scottish, c.1400; became frequent in English 15c.-16c. Extension to surnames seems to date from c.1940. Use with common nouns seems to have begun in Scottish with laddie (1546) and become popular in English due to Burns’ poems, but the same formation appears to be represented much earlier in baby and puppy. 1noun suffix, in army, city, country, etc., from Old French -e, Latin -atus, -atum, pp. suffix of verbs of the first conjugation. In victory, history, etc. it represents Latin -ia, Greek -ia. 2adjective suffix, “full of or characterized by,” from Old English -ig, from Proto-Germanic *-iga (cf. German -ig), cognate with Greek -ikos, Latin -icus.
- The symbol for the elementyttrium
- The symbol for yttrium.
- A silvery metallic element found in the same ores as elements of the lanthanide series. Yttrium is used to strengthen magnesium and aluminum alloys, to provide the red color in color televisions, and as a component of various optical and electronic devices. Atomic number 39; atomic weight 88.906; melting point 1,522°C; boiling point 3,338°C; specific gravity 4.45 (25°C); valence 3. See Periodic Table.