In Latin the suffix -que can be used to mean "and". For example:

Fames sitisque (Hunger and thirst)

Are there any modern Romance languages that use the suffix -que or something similar to it?

5 Answers 5


This claims that Romanian şi (and) derives from "-que", but Wiktionary derives it from "sic" (thus). (Being Wiktionary, of course without any sources.) To me, going from thus to and seems like a big leap, but I don't know anything for sure about that. Edit: Apparently not that giant a leap, see comments.

As far as actual enclitics go, I'm not aware of any Romance language that uses one, but I only know about the 'big' ones (Italian, French, Castilian, Portuguese, Romanian).

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    From thus to and via also is not a big leap at all. For what it's worth, most Slavic languages derive also from thus (common Slavic tak: "thus", "so", "in this way") in various ways (Russian: также, Czech: také, Serbian/Croat: takođe), and Slavic languages have been a significant influence on Romanian. Commented Mar 10, 2015 at 16:25
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    @NikolayErshov Not to mention English also, which of course is all + so. You are quite right.
    – user9315
    Commented Mar 10, 2015 at 22:24
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    -qu- and -gu- yield p and b, respectively, in Romanian. As far as a official sources for sic > si are concerned, all Romanian dictionaries confirm it.
    – Lucian
    Commented Mar 16, 2015 at 12:09
  • The irony being with also that it should technically, and I guess in practice deep non literary registers, be a'so (cp. German auch so) , same as as (cp. German als), the l being hylercorrect and the root most liquely a kin to the very -que in question. Inb4 German auch is cp. Nl. ok "and" and L. augustus, not Go. -hw and L. -que, I have two words to say, one of them being "you!"
    – vectory
    Commented Nov 20, 2023 at 16:10
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    At least as of today, wiktionary lists a source, and I have verified that it supports the derivation of şi from sic: dexonline.ro/definitie/%C8%99i/definitii Commented Nov 20, 2023 at 17:26

Two French/Italian examples :

o French "quiconque" (anyone) < Latin quicumque (anyone)

quicumque = qui + cum + -que

Italian : chiunque

o French "chacun" (each one) < Vulgar Latin "cascunu" < Latin "quisque unus" (every one), maybe mixed with Ancient Greek "unum kata unum" (one by one).

quisque = quis + -que

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    "unum" is Greek?
    – fdb
    Commented Mar 16, 2015 at 21:11
  • I bet the Wikipedia page I read supposed something like "unum κατὰ unum" (fr.wiktionary.org/wiki/chacun).
    – suizokukan
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 5:08
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    Old answer, but neither quiconque nor chiunque continues quicumque or -que in some other way (they're both ultimately qui + umquam), and unum cata (not kata) unum is obviously Latin; Greek κατά was borrowed into Late Latin.
    – Cairnarvon
    Commented Nov 20, 2023 at 21:50

If 'something similar' to Latin -que is good enough for you, present-day Spanish conmigo contains an old preposition or prepositional clitic suffix -cum hidden under the current from -go. [Our conmigo actually derives from cum mecum, where the -cum part of mecum was originally an adposition/a syntactic affix meaning 'with' arguably similar to the -que clitic meaning 'and'. That construction was, of course, redundant, a remnant of the stage at which late spoken Latin was becoming a head-complement language, what Romance languages soon were to develop into, but still contained important residues, mainly in VPs and PPs, of the earlier complement-head phase]. Less obviously, present-day Spanish quisqui, as in todo quisqui (= every body), cada quisqui (= each person), is a reflex of Latin quis-que (originally perhaps = somebody else).

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    "Spanish" quisqui is not a "real" Spanish word; it is a Latin word used in Spanish.
    – fdb
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 8:18
  • So are "quid", "quidam", "curriculum", "status quo" and a host of expressions that are both common in educated speech and listed in the official dictionary of the Real Academia Española. I assure you that "todo quisqui" and "cada quisqui" are absolutely normal in educated speech, and are as much part of the Spanish dictionary as thousands of words originally borrowed from Latin, Greek, English, French, Italian, and many other languages.
    – user6814
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 8:28
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    My point is simply that a Latin loan word is not evidence for a productive suffix -qui in Spanish. Also, in linguistics we distinguish between a "reflex" (your last sentence) and a "borrowing".
    – fdb
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 8:32

Considering not the Latin form -que, but just a word meaning "and" that would somehow be present as a suffix, Romanian și appears as an etymological base in this way.

Without being an actual suffix that would work like in Latin in modern Romanian, the form și (and) from Latin sic (which gave yes in other Romance languages) may be considered to have acted as a suffix (maybe in Proto-Romanian?) that explains the etymology of a few words (conjunctions, determiners), although it doesn't act now as a suffix.

Același (singular; plural: aceiași, fem.:aceeași, fem.,plural: aceleași) (the same) < acela (fem. aceea) (that one) + și (and). – Genitive/dative forms: aceluiași, aceleiași, acelorași (to the same).

Totuși (however) < tot (all) + și

Deși (although) < de (of, from, if etc) + și

Other words like însuși (himself) or însăși (herself) are formed with a different -și (from Latin se).


French has ouais in various senses of "yeah" (Collins Dictionary). Wartburg (FEW vol. 4 p. 444) derives it from hoc. See also language d'oc and language d'oil. Anyway, like hic, I guess that the coda is from a particle reconstructed with a voiced velar, possibly aspirated palatal (de Vaan: hic). This one is poorly understood. It is otter nonsense to equate ouais with -que, even when nequbi / necubi alternates the way it does, however.

The question concernes -que at the end of conjunctions. The major romance languages use a form of et "and" in enumeration instead. Fr. aussi "also, too" is from sic, so that's perhaps your best guess, analoguous to hic, hoc (hickery doo).

Ultimately it is not clear what the question is asking. As a matter of methodology, the vocabulary knowledge concerns the individual languages. The suffix being productive anywhere wouldn't really be a linguistic concern by the rules of this bord. As a matter of gaining a better understanding of the origins of the suffix, comparable to quisque, a broader view of Vulgar Latin is required. Latin.SE is over there, but evidence of spoken Latin is scarce, of course.

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