The suffix -ment is a common ending in English words that is used to form nouns from verbs. This suffix can be traced back to Latin, where it was spelled -mentum, and it had the same meaning as it does in English, to describe a process, an action, or the result of an action.
- The suffix -ment has been used in English for a long time.
- The Latin version was used in French words to change verbs into nouns.
- French loanwords then entered the English language, and these words gradually became a part of English vocabulary.
Keep reading to see how the suffix -ment is used in a wide range of English words, from “movement” to “treatment.” Its versatility and usefulness make it an essential part of the English language. You’ll also find a FREE Suffix -ment word list PDF download at the end of this post.
The Suffix -ment (Meaning)
The suffix -ment is added to verbs to make nouns that mean THE ACTION or THE RESULT OF.
For example, the verb manage becomes the noun management – the activity of running and controlling a business or similar organization.
The verb adjust becomes the noun adjustment – a small change made to something in order to correct or improve it. [The result of that small change is the adjustment.]
|Verb||+ ment = Noun|
|argue||argument – a conversation or discussion in which two or more people disagree, often angrily|
|develop||development – the steady growth of something so that it becomes more advanced, stronger, etc.|
|move||movement – an act of moving from one place to another or of moving something from one place to another|
|ship||shipment – the process of sending goods from one place to another|
|treat||treatment – something that is done to cure an illness or injury, or to make somebody look and feel good|
The Suffix -ment (Spelling Guide)
In most cases the suffix -ment is added to root words (stem) with no change in spelling, with one exception.
According to Wiktionary.org –
Generally attached to stem without changes, except when the stem ends in -dge, where the -e is sometimes dropped, as in abridgment, acknowledgment, judgment, and lodgment;-ment
*The verb argue also drops the -e when we make the noun argument.
My writing assistant Grammarly prefers to keep the -e before adding the suffix -ment for words
I make typos sometimes when I write my blog content. I often use voice typing which can also cause simple Grammar errors in my blog post document.
Grammarly helps me catch these mistakes saving me a lot of time. It can help you too. Get Grammarly for free.
The Suffix -ment (Real Examples)
Not every word on this list comes from a proper root verb that changes to a noun once you add the suffix -ment. As you read the list see if you can spot which words do not have a proper verb root. You can see a list of these words in the FAQ section below.
Every word on this list has a link to its definition and one or two example sentences to help you use these words in your own English conversations.
Abandonment・When a parent or caregiver does not give their child enough caring or attention it can lead to abandonment issues.
・After the abandonment of the project, the team had to start over from scratch.
Accomplishment・Winning the national championship was a huge accomplishment for the team.
・Miles Davis’ accomplishments were so significant that calling him just a talented musician is an understatement.
Adjustment・The mechanic made several adjustments to the engine and it started working perfectly again.
・The crew made several adjustments to the pipeline to prevent future leaks.
Advancement・Computer technology has seen major advancement in the last 10 years.
Advertisement・The billboard displayed an advertisement for a big travel company. It makes me want to travel somewhere warm, away from the cold Canadian winter.
Agreement・After a long negotiation, the two parties finally came to an agreement on the terms of the contract.
Alignment・I have the local repair shop check the alignment of my tires every year.
Amazement・Roger, much to everyone’s amazement, showed up to the party early to help set up. He’s always late.
Amusement・The carnival comes to the town every summer and provides a lot of amusement for the local children.
Announcement・The principal made an announcement over the intercom.
Appointment・Leon called his dentist to make an appointment for a checkup this Friday.
Argument・The couple had a heated argument about money over dinner. Finances are often a hot topic between a husband and wife.
Assessment・Standardized tests can help us make a proper assessment of the student’s needs.
Assignment・The professor gave us a big assignment just before summer vacation. No one was happy in my class.
Attachment・The email had an attachment with the report and the sales numbers from the last quarter.
・I included this graph as an attachment to the email everyone received this morning.
Basement・You can find some more storage boxes in the basement.
Befuddlement・If you grew up in a rural part of Canada and suddenly found yourself in the center of Tokyo, you’ll be befuddlement would be understandable.
Bereavement・The family went through a long period of bereavement after the loss.
Bewilderment・The unexpected news left him in a state of bewilderment.・She stared at her computer screen in complete bewilderment. It has frozen for the third time today.
Bombardment・The city underwent a heavy bombardment during the war. It took many years to repair all the damage.
Comment・I appreciate the thoughtful comments left on my blog posts. It helps guide me when I write new content.
Commitment・Alex showed great commitment to his training regimen. We fully expect him to make the Olympic team next year.
Compliment・Brian was very happy with the meal and gave a compliment to the chef on his way out of the restaurant.
Confinement・The suspect was subject to confinement while awaiting trial.
|Confinement can be found in the compound nouns:|
–Home confinement – confined to your home
–Solitary confinement – confined in a space completely alone
Consignment・The paintings were held on consignment until they were sold at auction.
Containment・The fire department’s first priority was the containment of the wildfire. After they stopped it from spreading they could focus on putting it out.
Contentment・Jeremy became a monk and found contentment in living a simple life, with no possessions or worries.
Deployment・The government announced the deployment of the military to assist the local police during the protests.
|Learn more about the prefix DE- at my blog post – 110 Words with The Prefix DE- (Free 8-page PDF + Video)|
Development・My hometown has seen rapid development in the last decade.
Disagreement・Matthew and Allen had a disagreement over the project. Those two never agree on anything.
Document・Our company HR manager drafted a document outlining how the merger will affect our current staff.
Employment・The factory provides employment to over 60% of the town’s residents.
・When the economy is doing well it means that employment rates are also high.
Endorsement・The celebrity’s endorsement of the product helped boost sales.
Entertainment・Disneyland always provides great entertainment. It has fun rides, exciting shows, and a happy atmosphere.
Establishment・The hotel is one of the city’s finest establishments.
Experiment・The scientist conducted an experiment to test the theory.
Government・The government’s new policy on healthcare has been met with mixed reactions.
・The citizens have a right to hold their government accountable.
Imprisonment・Violations of the country’s laws may result in fines or imprisonment. Please be careful when traveling.
・Long imprisonment has a negative impact on people’s mental health.
Improvement・The patients showed signs of improvement. This made the doctor optimistic about his recovery.
・I’ve seen great improvement in my students’ ability to communicate in English.
Investment・Nicholas took a chance and made a large investment in a startup company. He can make a lot of money but there’s also the risk of losing everything.
Involvement・Sarah was questioned by the police about her involvement in the crime.
Judgment: Success is the result of good judgment. Good judgment is the result of experience. Experience is often the result of bad judgment.
Management・Karen wasn’t happy with the service she received and asked to speak to someone from the management.
Mistreatment・An international animal rights group protested against the mistreatment of animals in the circus.
|Learn more about the prefix MIS- at my blog post – The Prefix MIS- 60 examples (Video + Free 6-page PDF)|
Movement・The peace movement led a protest against the country’s involvement in the war.
Nourishment・The child was weak and in poor health when he was found. With a safe place to sleep and proper nourishment, he is expected to fully recover.
・Plants need sufficient nourishment from the soil to grow.
Payment・Payments for the car loan are deducted from my bank account automatically every month.
・The company offers various methods of payment to its staff, but most people choose direct deposit in their bank accounts.
Pigment・The artist mixed different pigments to create the perfect shade of blue for the sky in his painting.
Postponement・Large protests and demonstrations caused the postponement of the state’s election.
・The severe storm caused the postponement of several events around the city.
Pronouncement・The president’s pronouncements have been met with distrust from the public.
Punishment・My fourth-grade teacher was very strict. We received harsh punishment for misbehaving in class.
・The punishment should fit the crime.
Readjustment・The company had to make some readjustments to its marketing strategy after a decline in sales.
・After moving to a new city, it took some time for the family to make the necessary readjustments.
Reassessment・A reassessment of the company’s finances showed that it was spending too much on storage fees for its products.
Recruitment・Most branches of the military have recruitment offices near shopping malls.
Reenactment・A local historical society organizes a reenactment of a famous Civil War battle every autumn.
Refinement・I took a look at my summer wardrobe and thought that it was too basic. It needs some refinement.
・Johnny liked the recipe but thought that it needed some refinement to make it extra special.
Refreshment・A cold drink of lemonade provided much-needed refreshment on a hot summer day.
・The hotel offers complimentary refreshments in the lobby.
Regiment・When my grandfather served in the army he was part of the parachute regiment. Those guys are fearless.
Reimbursement・Justine received a reimbursement for the defective product he had purchased.
Reinforcement・Reinforcement of the door made it more secure and less likely to be kicked in during a break-in attempt.
・The teacher used positive reinforcement to encourage good behavior in the classroom.
Reinstatement・All the staff thought the firing of Rob was unfair and they demanded his reinstatement under threat of a walkout.
・The athlete’s reinstatement was approved after his drug tests came back clean.
Repayment・Most banks will offer flexible repayment terms.
・The creditor demanded immediate repayment of the debt. Peter was shocked. He needs more time.
Replacement・After the accident, I couldn’t drive my car. Thankfully, the insurance company rented me a replacement to use while mine was being repaired.
・We need a replacement to take over your responsibilities during your summer holiday.
Requirement・A bachelor’s degree is a common requirement for many professional jobs.
・The school had strict requirements for admission.
Resentment・The siblings felt resentment towards each other after a dispute over their inheritance.
・Despite the apology, there was still a strong sense of resentment between the two coworkers.
Retirement・After many years of hard work, my grandfather was looking forward to retirement.
・The company offered an early retirement package to employees as part of their cost-cutting measures.
Segment・All I had to eat today was a piece of toast, a cup of coffee, and three segments of an orange.
・The television show is divided into several segments, including news, sports, and entertainment.
Sentiment・That is a sentiment that I totally agree with.
・The political leader’s remarks were met with mixed sentiments from the audience.
Settlement・The two countries’ leaders sat down to negotiate a peace settlement that would end the war.
・Both parties involved in the lawsuit reached a settlement out of court.
Shipment・The shipment of goods was delayed due to customs inspections.
Statement・His lawyer issued a statement denying any wrongdoing.
・Our company’s financial statement showed a profit for the quarter.
Supplement・A multivitamin supplement can provide additional nutrients that are missing from a person’s diet.
・The company provided a supplement to the employee handbook with updated policies.
Temperament・Natalie’s temperament is calm and easygoing. You can talk to her about anything.
・Her sister’s fiery temperament on the other hand often got her in trouble with authority figures.
Torment・The victim of bullying suffered mental torment for many years.
・The victim had been subjected to years of torment by her abuser.
Treatment: The doctor prescribed an experimental new treatment for her patient. So far, all traditional treatments have not been effective.
・The spa offered a variety of treatments, including massages and facials.
Understatement・Saying that the storm was just a little bit of rain is an understatement.
・Miles Davis’ accomplishments were so significant that calling him just a talented musician was an understatement.
|Learn more about how the word under is used as a prefix at my blog post – Over and Under as Prefixes (30 Examples – Video – Free PDF)|
Unemployment・The high rate of unemployment is a major concern for the government.
・Helen was worried about facing unemployment after her company announced layoffs.
|You can do a deeper study into negative prefixes like UN- at my blog post – 9 Common Negative Prefixes (200 examples, Free PDF, Video)|
The Suffix -ment FAQ (Frequently asked questions)
Can any word be made into a noun with the suffix -ment?
While many words can be made into nouns by adding the suffix -ment, not every word can be turned into a noun using this suffix.
Some verbs simply do not lend themselves to being transformed into nouns with this suffix. Additionally, some words may already have noun forms, and adding -ment may not create a meaningful or useful new noun.
Are all Words ending in -ment nouns?
Not all words ending in -ment are necessarily nouns. I mentioned above there are some words on this list with an identical verb form. Did you find them? I listed the words below.
Many nouns can also be used as adjectives.
“This is a water treatment plant.”
In the sentence the noun is plant, the compound ‘water treatment’ is acting as an adjective. It is telling us what kind of plant it is. It’s a building where water is treated.
What’s the difference between -ment and meant?
Ment is a suffix that is added to the end of a word to form a noun.
For example, “enjoyment” means the state or quality of experiencing pleasure, “judgment” means the act of judging, and “treatment” means the act or manner of treating someone or something.
Meant, on the other hand, is the past tense and past participle of the verb “mean.” Like most past participles meant is often used as an adjective that means “intended” or “purposed.”
“I meant to call you yesterday, but I was busy at work.” – This means I intended to call you yesterday, but I did not.
Are there any other suffixes that have a similar meaning to -ment?
Yes, there are other suffixes in English that have similar meanings to -ment and can be used to form nouns from other words. Here are a few examples:
-ation: This suffix is commonly added to verbs to form nouns that denote the process or act of the verb.
For example, “investigate” becomes “investigation,” “educate” becomes “education,” and “communicate” becomes “communication.”
-age: This suffix is added to verbs to form nouns that denote a collection, act, or process.
For example, “pack” becomes “package” and “marry” becomes “marriage.”
-ness: This suffix is added to adjectives to form nouns that denote a state or quality.
For example, “dark” becomes “darkness,” “kind” becomes “kindness,” and “happy” becomes “happiness.”
What is the origin of the suffix -ment?
The suffix -ment comes from French, or from Latin -mentum.
ment suffix – OxfordLearnersDictionaries.com
Printable Suffix -ment PDF Word List
Download the Word List as a printable PDF. Great for teachers to use with private or group classes. PDF contains the live links from the post.
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