Etymology
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-al (1)
suffix forming adjectives from nouns or other adjectives, "of, like, related to, pertaining to," Middle English -al, -el, from French or directly from Latin -alis (see -al (2)).
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*al- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "beyond."

It forms all or part of: adulteration; adultery; alias; alibi; alien; alienate; alienation; allegory; allele;  allergy; allo-; allopathy; allotropy; Alsace; alter; altercation; alternate; alternative; altruism; eldritch; else; hidalgo; inter alia; other; outrage; outrageous; outre; parallax; parallel; subaltern; synallagmatic; ulterior; ultimate; ultra-.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit anya "other, different," arana- "foreign;" Avestan anya-, Armenian ail "another;" Greek allos "other, different, strange;" Latin alius "another, other, different," alter "the other (of two)," ultra "beyond, on the other side;" Gothic aljis "other," Old English elles "otherwise, else," German ander "other."

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-al (3)
word-forming element in chemistry to indicate "presence of an aldehyde group" (from aldehyde). The suffix also is commonly used in forming the names of drugs, often narcotics (such as barbital), a tendency that apparently began in German and might have been suggested by chloral (n.).
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al- 
in words from Arabic (or assumed to be), it is the definite article "the." Sometimes rendered in English as el-. Often assimilated to following consonants (as-, az-, ar-, am-, an-, etc.). Examples include almanac, alchemy, alcohol, algebra.
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-al (2)
suffix forming nouns of action from verbs, mostly from Latin and French, meaning "act of ______ing" (such as survival, referral), Middle English -aille, from French feminine singular -aille, from Latin -alia, neuter plural of adjective suffix -alis, also used in English as a noun suffix. Nativized in English and used with Germanic verbs (as in bestowal, betrothal).
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*al- (2)
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to grow, nourish."

It forms all or part of: abolish; adolescent; adult; alderman; aliment; alimony; Alma; alma mater; alt (2) "high tone;" alti-; altimeter; altitude; alto; alumnus; auld; coalesce; elder (adj., n.1); eldest; Eldred; enhance; exalt; haught; haughty; hautboy; hawser; oboe; old; proletarian; proliferation; prolific; world.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek aldaino "make grow, strengthen," althein, althainein "to get well;" Latin alere "to feed, nourish, suckle; bring up, increase," altus "high," literally "grown tall," almus "nurturing, nourishing," alumnus "fosterling, step-child;" Gothic alþeis, Dutch oud, German alt "old;" Gothic alan "to grow up," Old Norse ala "to nourish;" Old Irish alim "I nourish."
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alluvial (adj.)
"deposited by flowing water," 1794; see alluvium + -al (1).
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spectral (adj.)
1718, "capable of seeing spectres;" 1815, "ghostly;" from spectre + -al (1). Meaning "pertaining to a spectrum" is 1832, from stem of spectrum + -al (1). Related: Spectrally.
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