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AFFIXATION (PREFIXES and SUFFIXES)
Student: Bîrţoiu Cătălina Gabriela Anul: III Semestrul: I Grupa: I
runner. however. -ize only verbs. inattentive. More fine-grained classifications run into numerous problems.AFFIXATION ( PREFIXES AND SUFFIXES) An affix is a morpheme that is attached to a word stem to form a new word. outrun. For example. this is problematic because certain suffixes sometimes do change the category of the base and sometimes do not. because they not only attach to bases of different categories. which is category-changing in employee. Again.g. the prefix de. Prefixes are more problematic in this respect. Yet another criterion could be whether an affix changes the syntactic category of its base word. the prefixes un-. Any given English suffix derives words of only one category (the only exception to this generalization seems to be -ish.g. either persons or things. overcoat. There is one criterion that is rather unproblematic. prefixes over. testee.and out-: overfill. Consider. the suffix –less (useless. but not so in pickpocketee. affixes are often classified according to the syntactic category of their base words. at least with suffixes. -ness only derives nouns. divide affixes into common semantic categories: Personal affixes (create ‘people nouns’) ♦ Form ‘agent’ nouns (the ‘doer’ of the action) for example: the suffix –er: writer. so it would often not be clear under which category an affix should be listed.(mean something like ‘cause to be without’): debug or debone Prepositional and relational affixes: often convey notions of space and/or time. Negative and privative affixes ♦ ‘Negative’ adds the meaning ‘not’ to their base. in-. whether they are prefixes or suffixes. outhouse etc. The most obvious way is according to their position with regard to the base. e. namely the syntactic category of the derived form. but also often derive different categories. see below). hopeless) e. (All of the forms derived with –er denote concrete nouns. broadcaster etc. There are different ways of classifying affixes. for example. -able only adjectives.g. Another possible basis of classification could be the affixes’ semantic properties. -ee. ♦ e. 2 . We can. interviewee etc. this does not always work properly because affixes may take more than one type of base. related to their base verbs by participating in the action). e. but this has the disadvantage that many affixes can express a whole range of meanings. Thus.g. non-: unhappy. but. non-functional ♦ ‘Privative’ means something like ‘without X’. ♦ Form ‘patient’ nouns (the person the action is done to) for example: the suffix –ee: employee.
re-: handful. -ment: assessment. -ing: building. -an: technician. careerist. Utopian. yardage. retardance. helpful. -ship: apprenticeship. With regard to potential base words. voltage. riddance. clerkship. but also properties. -ees: princess. dependency. Diminutives and augmentatives frequently have other nuances of meaning. diminutives often convey affection or endearment. Evaluative affixes consist of: ♦ Diminutives affixes that signal a smaller version of the base: e. disclaimant. -eer: auctioneer. –ful. or expectance. the prefix mega. Augmentatives sometimes have pejorative overtones. SUFFIXES 1. droplet. tigress. cameldom. handful. stewardess. stickful. treatment. lioness. writer. -ist: ballonist. wrapping. Nominal suffixes Nominal suffixes are often employed to derive abstract nouns from verbs. referral. waitress. stuffing. maoridom. Quantitative affixes: have to do with amount. Parkinsonism. -ful: bootful. multicultural. childhood. -ance (with its variants -ence/-ancy/-ency): absorbance. statesmanship.g. productivity. dependence. reread. Such abstract nouns can denote actions. amputee.. fantasist. -dom: kingdom.g. membership. friendship. acreage. recital. profundity. minimalist. or other related concepts. ♦ e. expectancy. budgeteer. historian. biography. The suffix can attach to practically any adjective.as in megastore. multi. tumblerful. -ant: applicant. -hood: adulthood. -er: teacher. and apart from adjectival base words 3 . revisionism. *Quality noun forming -ness is perhaps the most productive suffix of English. endorsement. results of actions. leakage. For example. farmerhood. defendant. megabite. cameleer. -ity: curiosity. ♦ Augmentatives affixes that signal a bigger version of the base: e. spillage. –let as in booklet. qualities and the like: -age: coverage. -ism: blondism. conservatism. -ee: employee. adjectives and nouns. involvement. renewal. pamphleteer.g. -al: arrival. -ness is much less restrictive than its close semantic relative -ity. mountaineer. overthrowal. singer. cupful. solidity. Marxism.
-ary: complementary. perishable. -ify and -ize. tremendous. Adjectival suffixes -able/ible: agreeable.we find nouns as in thingness. circumscribe). dissonate. Verbal suffixes There are four suffixes which derive verbs from other categories (mostly adjectives and nouns). regulate. fair-minded. ‘twice or two’ (bi-. ‘large’ (macro-. -less: expressionless. omnipotent. -en: blacken. micro-surgical. air-minded. multi-purpose. pronouns as in us-ness and frequently phrases as in over-thetop-ness. macroeconomics. inter-‘between’ (interbreed. -ive: connective.historical. -ic/-ical: electric . there are numerous locative prefixes such as circum. -ly: brotherly. economic . ‘one’ (uni-. -ful: beautiful. -wise: sarongwise. over’ (epiglottis. passive. overtax). primitive. hyperactive.‘around’ (circumnavigate. broaden. hospitalize. omnipresent). pig-headed. semi-desert). Second. Adverbial suffixes -ly: shortly. synonymous. ripen. para4 . unification). polysyllabic. purposeful.‘on. comprehensible. freeish. ditransitive). there is a large group that quantify over their base words meaning. epicentral). bifurcation and di-. precautionary. flexible. -en. for example. semi-conscious. hypermarket and over-. -ous: curious. explosive. epi. Hemingwayesque. federal. intra. -ize: computerize. emphasize. ‘half’ (semi-. ‘not sufficiently‘ (undernourish. modal. intergalactic). endocrinology).economomical. womanly. magic – magical. discernible. cultural. unilateral. bilateral. daughterly.‘against’ (counterbalance. ‘small’ (micro-. tactful. dryly. changeable. insightful. endo-‘internal to X’ (endocentric. intravenous). macro-biotic). picturesque. reversible. -ed: empty-headed. barbarous.‘inside’ (intramuscular. 3.electrical. all-or-nothing-ness. sharpish. microwave). quicken. underpay). preventive. ‘many’ (multi-. overestimate. fatherly. purify. multi-lateral and poly-. solidify. counter. institutional. historic . evolutionary. colonial. ‘all’ (omni-. variable. disyllabic. fricative. -ify: humidify. famous. -ate. -ish: clearish. -esque: Chaplinesque. polyclinic). fragmentary. speechless. ‘to excess’ (hyper-. lengthwise. 4. counterexample). hardly. offensive. legendary. -ate: fluorinate. -al: accidental. 2. hopeless. thankless. PREFIXES The prefixes of English can be classified semantically into the following groups: First.
anti-capitalistic. pre and fore. premedical.‘back. mistrial). ‘after’ (post-. preconcert. Third. unwind. un-. retrospection). foresee). NeoLatin). anti-scientific. anti-abortion. antedate. deselect. The negative prefixes appear to be more complex in their distribution and behavior than most of the other suffixes and their domains overlap considerably: a-: achromatic. misinterpret. inactive. disconnect. postmodify. deflea. uncork. poststructuralism. ‘badly.‘along with’ (paramedic. malfunction. asexual. see below for examples). ‘false. ‘together. disassociate. backwards’ (retroflex. unleash. paranormal). decaffeinate. Furthermore. de-: decolonize. unsaddle. however. implausible. retro. forefather. neoclassical. non-. The vast majority of prefixes do not change the syntactic category of their base words. 5 . dethrone. un-: unbind. dis-. malnutrition). ‘in place of’ (vice-) etc. or noun) and do not influence the stress pattern of their bases. transmigrate). asymmetrical.‘across’ (transcontinental. disproof. trans. jointly’ (co-). postmodern). non-: nonbiological. discharge. adjective. they merely act as modifiers. deceptive’ (pseudo-). de-. Numerous prefixes do not fit into any of the four groups. wrongly’ (mis-. non-commercial. there are temporal prefixes expressing notions like ‘before’ (ante-. as in antechamber. unwrap. illegal. A fourth group consists of prefixes expressing negation ( a(n)-. anti-freeze. in-. depollute. predetermine. intolerable. it can be observed that they generally attach to more than one kind of syntactic category (verb. and express diverse notions. such as ‘wrong. non-returnable. evil’ (mal-. dis-: disassemble. ahistorical. anti-: anti-war. in-: incomprehensible. or ‘new’ (neo-.
Valerie. 6 . Adams. Complex Words in English. 2. 2003. 2001. Plag. 2001. Morphological Productivity. 3. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.REFERENCES: 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Laurie. Harlow: Longman. Ingo. Bauer. Word formation in English.
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