Go to 'thermo-' entry Go to 'dino-' entry Go to 'chondro-' entry Go to 'aero-' entry Go to '-logy' entry Go to 'thaumato-' entry Go to 'nano-' entry Go to '-sophy' entry Go to 'bucco-' entry Go to '-ism' entry Go to '-lysis' entry Go to 'galacto-' entry Go to '-anthropy' entry Go to 'pneumo-' entry Go to '-ploitation' entry Go to '-lithic' entry Go to '-sepalous' entry Go to 'onco-' entry Go to '-parous' entry Go to 'dermato-' entry Go to 'multi-' entry Go to 'dodeca-' entry Go to '-zoon' entry Go to 'vermi-' entry Go to 'crystallo-' entry Go to 'biblio-' entry Go to 'eco-' entry Go to 'juxta-' entry Go to 'facio-' entry
Affixes: the building blocks of English
Affixes: the building blocks of English

-phyll Also -phyllous.

Leaf.

[Greek phullon, leaf.]

Two common terms in this ending relate not to leaves themselves, but to chemical compounds they contain: chlorophyll (Greek khlōros, green), the pigment in plants which absorbs light to provide energy for photosynthesis; xanthophyll (Greek xanthos, yellow), a yellow or brown pigment which causes the autumn colours of leaves. Others refer to types or parts of leaves, or plants bearing certain types of leaf: mesophyll (Greek mesos, middle), the inner tissue of a leaf, containing many chloroplasts; microphyll, a very short leaf, as in a moss or clubmoss; sclerophyll (Greek sklēros, hard), a woody plant with evergreen leaves that are tough and thick in order to reduce water loss. Adjectives are usually formed in -phyllous: sclerophyllous, microphyllous; examples in other endings are known (mesophyllic, chlorophylline), but are much less common.

Visit Michael Quinion’s World Wide Words site for 2000+ articles on English!

Copyright © Michael Quinion 2008–. All rights reserved. Page last updated 23 September 2008.
Your comments and suggestions on the site are very welcome.