I. adjective suffix or adverb suffix
Etymology: Middle English -er, -ere, -re, from Old English -ra (in adjectives), -or (in adverbs); akin to Old High German -iro, adjective comparative suffix, Latin -ior, Greek -iōn
— used to form the comparative degree of adjectives and adverbs of one syllable <hotter> <drier> and of some adjectives and adverbs of two or more syllables <completer> <beautifuller> II. noun suffix also -ier or -yer Etymology: Middle English -er, -ere, -ier, -iere; partly from Old English -ere (from Latin -arius); partly from Old French -ier, -iere, from Latin -arius, -aria, -arium -ary; partly from Anglo-French -ere, from Latin -ator -or — more at -ary, -or 1. a. person occupationally connected with <furrier> <lawyer> b. person or thing belonging to or associated with <header> <old-timer> c. native of ; resident of <cottager> <New Yorker> d. one that has <three-decker> e. one that produces or yields <porker> 2. a. one that does or performs (a specified action) <batter> — sometimes added to both elements of a compound <builder-upper> b. one that is a suitable object of (a specified action) <broiler> 3. one that is <foreigner> — in all senses -yer in a few words after w, -ier in a few other words, otherwise -er
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.