The study of the structure and formation of words and their component parts, "morphemes".

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Origin of the term “iminutive”

The word "iminutive" is used in Yiddish, and, apparently, Bavarian grammar to refer to the second diminutive (i.e., of nouns). The etymology of "diminutive" is clear. As for the provenance of the ...
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40 views

Vowel Shift and Affixes

It is well known that morphology influences phonology to a certain extent. This can be seen with how vowels that should shift do not shift when the words are affixed by certain morphemes. Some affixes ...
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45 views

Term for modifying a word to create its opposite connotation

I'm interested in knowing if there is a specific term for the phenomenon (in English) where a word with a positive connotation can be modified to create a word or phrase with a negative connotation (...
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Languages that have morphological distinction between independent clauses with implicit subjects and independent clauses with explicit subjects?

Many languages permit an independent clause to lack an explicit subject (known as null-subject languages). Consider the following sentences taken from Spanish. Tú eres mi amiga. (You are my friend). ...
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Derivational morphanalyzer for English

I am looking for a derivational morphoanalyzer for the English language. I came across one by Xerox. Does anyone know of any other such analyzer? I am not interested in inflectional morphanalyzers.
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Are there any languages besides Korean where vowel harmony is used semantically?

Korean has an interesting feature, in that mimetic words and colours can be altered by changing their vowels from one vowel harmony grouping to the other. The two groupings are called yin vowels and ...
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133 views

Languages where numbers are read out in a mixed-up fashion

The German number system has the peculiarity that the ones are read out before the tens. For example: 634542 = Sechshundertvierunddreißigtausendfünfhundertvzweiundvierzig = "six hundred four-...
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37 views

What is some standard analysis for “Look me in the eye”

I am looking for hints where to find a ("standard") analysis of something like this english dative construction: Look me in the eye Clearly, the "the" in this phrase is semantically scoped BY the ...
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37 views

Why “Monotonicity” Hypothesis? (Koontz-Garboden)

Should't it be "monodirectionality hypothesis"? In my understanding, this is about the one-way that material/structure can be added to a sentence-while-generated, but never deleted. (Harley 2013 ...
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44 views

“The bat broke the window” - double meaning in The Stuff of Thought

Some background: In Steven Pinker's book The Stuff of Thought, he critiques Radical Pragmatics (ch 3). In one instance, on pages 121-122, he describes a computer simulation of Radical Pragmatics by ...
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75 views

Help with palatalisation and syllabification

Does palatalisation only occur at the beginning of a given word? All textbook examples (muse, beauty...) are at the beginning. Could somebody also explain syllabification? (Lecturer hardly covered ...
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27 views

What are polymorphemic words? [duplicate]

Are Polymorphemic words the same as Complex words? Do you have some examples? What about word formations like "green table" or "snow ball", "major lift"? Unforgettable would be a polymorphemic word ...
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50 views

About allomorphs of morphemes [closed]

Is it possible for an allomorph of a morpheme to have another allomorph that is a free form? Could you give an example?
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80 views

Are all morphemes meaningful?

According to the notes I kept during a lecture on Morphology, morphemes are meaningful themselves and they can also differentiate meaning. Are all morphemes considered to be meaningful? For example {-...
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63 views

Order of cases in Indo-European languages by morphologic similarity

Following the first Greek grammars or even older sources, there is a traditional and apparently arbitrary order used for cases in most if not all living European languages, e.g. in declension tables. ...
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34 views

What term describes the production of new words by 'aggregating them'?

Certain words seem to come from gluing or aggregating other extant words; what is the technical name given for phenomenon? For example: In Sanskrit: pratyaksanamanagamah; where pratyaksa is percept, ...
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27 views

Does this count as predicate transfer?

Yesterday, I asked the meaning of some phrases in this Wikipedia article on predicate transer on English language and usage, assuming that I didn't understand the article because of those phrases. I ...
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65 views

How should I organize my grammar?

So I'm doing a grammar for my conlang (constructed language). My conlang is a very verb-heavy/polysynthetic language. E.g. subordinate clauses are marked on the verb. To create a conditional clause -...
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51 views

In the context of 'case', what does 'grammatical' mean in 'grammatical relation of a noun in a sentence'?

My question concerns only p 48: what does grammatical mean? Its use does not appear to match any of the definitions of 'grammar' below. I know of the distinctions between Descriptive, Prescriptive, ...
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65 views

How is the English noun 'system' a 'base'?

Source: An Introduction to Language (10 ed, 2014) by V Fromkin, R Rodman, N Hyams. I already read this. [p 578:] root = The morpheme that remains when all affixes are stripped from a complex word, ...
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52 views

Inclusive/Exclusive Pronouns and Agreement Mismatch

The following data (taken from Adger's Core Syntax) show that certain forms cause mismatching agreement. The dual, in Hopi, triggers both singular and plural agreement. Puma ta?taq-t wari Those man-...
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41 views

Do each intensive prefix intensify a verb uniquely and differently from other intensive prefixes?

Please feel free to emend this if I have not described my question cogently. Though knowing little of Latin, I have exemplified with it because I have encountered it more than Ancient Greek. For ...
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227 views

Examples of stems that are NOT words

I read that technically, most words are also stems (most words can be further elaborated somehow); but stems are sometimes not words, since some stems are bound, that is, they require further ...
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84 views

How to generalize over these morphological rules?

I've just started a linguistic course at university, we've just started Morphology this week. I am very new to the subject and I am looking for some guidance about how to approach a morphology ...
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75 views

What is the meaning of “Mar”? [closed]

I am wondering what is the meaning of ," Mar" part of some words such as Margarita, Maria, Martin? I appreciate your answer! Thanks in advance! Margarita
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94 views

finding the language stem of vowelless Hebrew

I am looking for tools to find the language stem in vowelless Hebrew, preferably a full list of suffixes and prefixes with the stem. A small list can be found on wikipedia. An extensive list can be ...
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175 views

Is this a nonce word or is there another name for a regularly constructed neologism?

I had an argument with a friend, since he didn't find "claustrophilia" in the dictionary he thought it should be called a nonce word. I thought the term "nonce" was for one-off words that arose a ...
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144 views

Characteristics of Theoretical Linguistics [closed]

I've been asked by my professor to do a research about the characteristics of Theoretical Linguistics, and now I'm stuck. What are these characteristics that makes theoretical linguistics a ...
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128 views

Why does inflection in any language sound so natural? [closed]

I saw this video and realised that all mentioned Old English plurals sound pretty natural for me, even though I'm native Czech speaker. Also in German I think inflection seems to follow some universal ...
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232 views

Does adding the suffix -ly to a noun or an adjective provide morphological evidence for word class?

For example, adding -ly to quick to make quickly. Or adding -ly to gentleman to make gentlemanly.
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48 views

What are the dimensions along which English & Portuguese differ? [closed]

What are the dimensions along which English & Portuguese differ, and how are these dimensions of variation related and restricted?
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125 views

How can case systems emerge diachronically?

This questions applies only to the languages which originally did not feature noun case systems and developed it over time through various sound, morphological and syntactical changes. By a case ...
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96 views

Origins of gender distinction in verbs in Slavic

This is a thing that I have been thinking about for a while. I know that PIE did not have gender distinction in verb forms, and its presence in modern Slavic languages must be an innovation. If I am ...
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300 views

words ending in -man: Compound or suffix?

What are words ending in -man (policeman, postman ...) classified as? compounds or suffixes? Some books that i've read considered policeman as a suffix, since the element -man means 'person' and it ...
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70 views

Possible connection between PIE Ablaut and Semitic vowel alternation

Since I started to read about language typology and then got a hint about PIE ablaut system I have been wondering if there might be any prehistorical connection between these families at least ...
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55 views

TAM categories: Can they be predicted from their numbers (a language's TAM inventory size)?

To some extent, vowels can be predicted based on the size of the vowel inventory, so, for example, in a 3-vowel system, it will be /a i u/, whereas in a 4-vowel system, we will get /a i u ɛ/ or /a i u ...
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119 views

stem classes and the terms “fusional” / “inflectional”

I have seen both the word "fusional" and the words "inflectional"/"flectional" used as the counterparts of "agglutinative" when describing a morphological process. 1) Is there a distinction between ...
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91 views

Assuming that passives need verbal morphology, which languages commonly said to have a passive do not actually count?

Among others, I recently read the passive definition by Martin Haspelmath (from THE GRAMMATICIZATION OF PASSIVE MORPHOLOGY, 1990), which states (page 26/27 of the book, the second/third page of the ...
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157 views

Are there languages that form noun singulars by adding suffixes to plurals, rather than vice versa?

In languages that express grammatical number in nouns with suffixes, usually there is either a suffix added to an unsuffixed singular to form the plural (cat—cats), or the suffix (or inflectional ...
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In languages with robust case systems, such as Latin, Russian, and Finnish, is there a case in which appositives commonly occur?

In English appositive constructions, noun phrases can be juxtaposed to convey the fact that they are co-referential. "I, Don Quixote," "John, the baker," "the art-object, a bronzed umbrella," and "...
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Constraints for the -er affix

I was doing my homework and got stuck with questions iii and iv. The book doesn't contain information regarding these two questions and I don't know what applies here. To me, it seems like: iii) ...
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93 views

Is “cran” still a cranberry morpheme, given Cran-Apple, crantini, etc.?

"Cran-" is the eponymous and archetypal "cranberry morpheme", which Wikipedia describes as "a type of bound morpheme that cannot be assigned an independent meaning or grammatical function, but ...
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31 views

are words more independent from syntax in non-analytical languages? Does this affect language processing?

When we think about the morphology and syntax, the debate arises. Even if they are protagonist parts of linguistic debates, and even if they are usually address separately, the importance of each ...
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131 views

Are there languages whose nouns have multiple cases but whose determiners and adjectives do not agree with the nouns in case?

In many languages that feature multiple cases for nouns, the determiners and attributive adjectives agree with their associated nouns for case, among other things. You can find examples of adjective ...
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68 views

Word classes reliant on phonological form?

1) Are there any documented languages in which a certain word class corresponds to a particular phonological structure? A. CVC(VC) = Noun In Polish, the word kot 'cat' (CVC) corresponds to a ...
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137 views

Can the prefix re- be added to nouns?

I am a little confused about what affix to add first to the stem "elect". The word is re-election. If I add the suffix -ion first, then it turns the verb into a noun. The affix 're-' attaches best to ...
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Is it common to analyze grammatically motivated vowel alternation as an occurence of discontinuous morphemes?

For example, are the triconsonantal roots in Arabic (like k-t-b --write) considered to be discontinuous morphemes? How about the English roots (s-ng -- sing, sang, sung, song) and (beg-n -- begin, ...
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250 views

What is the morpheme that marks a question called?

When languages have a morpheme attached to the word that makes it a question, such as a suffix, is this called a question suffix, an interrogative, suffix, etc? I don't have much experience in ...
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203 views

Can present tense be more marked?

Are there languages that overtly mark present tense, rather than future/past? In other words, is the present ever more marked? There doesn't seem to be a way to search for it in WALS, unfortunately.
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209 views

How many bases does a compound word have?

How many bases does the word girlfriends have? Let's take this word apart. girl -- root friend -- root s -- affix that denotes plural form Base may be identical with the word root but can also ...