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Philippine Normal University National Center for Teacher Education Taft Ave.

, Manila College of Graduate Studies and Teacher Research Education FACULTY OF ARTS AND LANGUAGES LING507 (Morphology and Syntax) 1st Sem S.Y. 2013-2014 Dr. Gina O. Gonong

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Word Formation
Long human words (the longer the better) were easy, unmistakable, and rarely changed their meanings . . . but short words were slippery, unpredictable, changing their meanings without any pattern. Robert A. Heinlein I. General Word Formation Processes a. Affixation and compounding Affixes are bound morphemes which occur with roots and, in general, modify the basic meaning of the root in some way. Types of Affixes a.1 Prefixes a.2 Suffixes a.3 Infixes a.4 Circumfixes the base a.5 Suprafixes Exercise A: data. __________1. affixes that occur preceding roots affixes occur following roots - affixes occur inside the root itself discontinuous affixes that occur on both sides of suprasegmental phonemes that carry meaning

Determine what kind of affix is attached to each set of Data from Kamhmu (northern Laos region) kap hiip see to grasp with tongs to eat with spoon to drill krnap hrniip srnee tongs a spoon a drill

__________ 2. k k nk giving __________ 3.

Data from Chatino (Oaxaca, Mexico) I eat he eats he is eating t t nt I give he gives you are

Data from Chickasaw (Oklahoma, U.S.A)

chokna good yellow __________ 4. drummer beton worker lom collector __________ 5. other sev love

he is good

ikchokmo iklakno ikpallo

he isnt it isnt it isnt hot

lakna it I yellow palli it is hot Data from Russian baraban drum concrete scrap Data from Turkish anla understand

barabanshchik betonshchik concrete

lomshchik slavage

anlas understand each sevis love each other

b. Base modification (stem modification/alternation) This is a collective term for morphological patterns in which the shape of the base is changed without adding segmentable material. A common type of base modification pattern results from changing place of articulation. b.1 Vowel Modification Fronting (data from German) mutter mothers vater fathers tochter teachers teacher tchter father vtter mother mtter

Lengthening (data from Huallaga Quechua from Peru) 2ND SINGULAR 1St SINGULAR I go when I

aywa-nki you go aywa: aywa-pti-ki when you want aywa-pti: went aywa-shka-nki have gone

you have gone aywa-shka: I

Shortening (data from Hindi/Urdu India/Pakistan) ma:r kho:l kill open (tr.) mar die khul open (intr.)

phe:r b.2

turn (tr.)


turn (intr.)

Consonant modification Palatalization armik murg papagall enemy monk parrot armiq enemies murgj monks papagaj parrots

Weakening (data from Scottish Gaelic) NOM SG INDF [b] bard [b] balach GEN PL INDF [v] bard bard [v] bhalach


Gemination (data from Standard Arabic) darasa teach damara b.3 perish dammara annihilate Tonal change or stress shift data from Chalcatongo Mixtec (Oaxaca, Mexico) Noun kba xa data from English Noun ddress bject b.4 lambs wawoc white herons Exercise B: set of data. 1. Determine the kind of base modification involved in each data from Polish white heron wawo Verb addrss object filth foot Adjective kb kb dirty standing learn darrasa

Subtraction (data from Murle southern Sudan) nyoon lamb nyoo

rodziny 'families' saki sacks, bags' leki 'medicines' 2. onyiit rottin 3.

rodzinny adjective of 'family' ssaki 'mammals', lekki light (for weight)

data from Murle of Sudan rib warrior data from English speak spoke foot feet data from English belief grief believe grieve sing ring sang rang onyii rotti ribs warriors


c. Reduplication This happens when a part of the base or the entire base is copied and attached to the base (either preceesing or following it). In Malagasy (Madagascar), adjectives with the stress on the first syllable copy the entire base. In the reduplicated form the meaning of the adjective is less intense. be fotsy maimbo stinky hafa big, numerous white stinky different be-be fairly-big, numerous fotsi-fotsy whitish maimbo-maimbo somewhat somewhat different


In Ponapean and Mangap-Mbula, only part of the base is copied. In Ponapean a consonant + vowel (CV) sequence is prefixed to the stem, whereas in Mangap-Mbula a vowel + consonant (VC) sequence is suffixed t the stem. Reduplication of a CV sequence before the base: Ponapean (Caroline Islands) duhp dive mihk suck wehk confess du-duhp mi-mink we-wehk be diving be sucking be confessing

Reduplication of a VC sequence after the base: Mangap-Mbula (Papua New Guinea) kuk kel bark dig kuk-uk ke-el be barking be digging




be eating

The element that is attached to the base often consists of both copied segments and fixed segments, so that a kind of mixture between affix and reduplicant results. Such elements may be called duplifixes. Plurals in Somali: duplifix aC buug fool koob jid book face cup street buug-ag books fool-al faces koob-ab cups jid-ad streets

Sort of adjectives in Tzutujil (Guatemala): duplifix Coj saq rax qeq tziil white green black dirty saq-soj rax-roj qeq-qoj blackish tzil-tzoj dirtyish whitish greenish

d. Conversion This happens when the form of the base remains unaltered. A standard example is the relationship between some verbs and nouns in English. Noun hammer ship drink Verb hammer ship drink Noun plant walk run Verb plant walk run

Exercise C: Determine the formal operation involved in the following morphological patterns. 1. Mbay (v=low tone, v=high tone, v= mid tone) from Central Africa tt nd rya break wrap split tt nd ry break several times wrap severa; times split several times

2. Yimas (Papua New Guinea) manpa kika yaka 3. Coptic (Egypt) kt hp build hide kt hp be built be hidden crocodile rat balck possum manpawi kikawi yakawi crocodiles rats black possums




be shut

4. Hausa (v = low tone, v = high tone) from Nigeria bugaa taakaa dannee 5. German finden singen binden II. find sing tie gefunden found gesungen sung gebunden tied beat bubbugaa beat many times step one tattaakaa trample oppress daddannee oppress many time

Word Formation Processes in English a. Derivation - ''the most common word formation process'' (Yule 2006, 57) It is a word formation processes that builds new words by adding morphemes to stems. These morphemes are added to the target stem by affixation, through prefixes and suffixes. - Changes the lexical category (-ness, -ation) e.g. happy + -ness = happiness (adjective + -ness noun) adj noun accuse + -ation = accusation (verb + -ation verb noun exact + -ly adverb) adj = exactly (adjective + -ly adv noun) noun) verb) verb) noun)

- Does not change the lexical category ( -ish, -ship, auto-, il-) e.g. friend + -ship = friendship ( noun + -ship noun noun America + -an noun = American ( noun + -an noun

un- + do = undo ( un- + verb verb verb re - + cover = recover ( re- + verb verb verb pink + -ish adjective) adj adj

= pinkish ( adjective + -ish


+ legal

= illegal (-il + adjective

adj adj Exercise A Determine how the following words are derived by separating the derivational morpheme/s used in each word. Write C if there is a change in the lexical category. (Kindly improve. Please? Tama po ba? I am running out of words to state the instructions) ______1. designer ______6. humanity ______2. autobiography ______7. vaccinate ______3. freedom ______8. tallness ______4. runny ______9. prediction ______5. inaccurate _____10. submaximal


Blending A blending is a combination of two or more words to create a new one. (Yousefi 2009) 1. taking the beginning of the other word and the end of the other one. e.g., spork (spoon + fork), fanzine (fan + magazine) bromance (brother + romance) Spanglish (Spanish + English) 2. both beginnings of a word e.g. (cybernetic + organism cyborg) 3. take a whole word and combine it with a part of another one (guess + estimate guesstimate) Exercise B Can you guess how these words were formed? Provide the origin of each word below. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. affluenza ginormous hamwich jeggings Brangelina 6. anecdata 7. grue 8. Jazzercise 9. bankster 10. chillax

c. Initialism & Acronymy Initialisms and Acronyms are shortenings, build from the initial letters in a phrase or name. While acronyms are pronounced as single words (NASA , AIDS), initialisms are pronounced ''as a sequence of letters'' (DNA, USA). (Finegan 2007, 48) 1. Acronyms containing non-initial letters e.g. Interpol - International Criminal Police Organization

2. 3. 4.

radar - radio detection and ranging Pronounced as a combination of initialism and acronym e.g. CD-ROM, JPEG Recursive initialisms, in which the abbreviation refers to itself PHP - PHP hypertext preprocessor Pseudo-initialisms, which consist of a sequence of characters that, when pronounced as intended, invoke other, longer words (IOU I owe you, CU See you).


Borrowing & Calque Borrowing is the process of actually borrowing words from foreign languages. The English language has been borrowing words from ''nearly a hundred languages in the last hundred years'' (Finegan 2007, 51) e.g. Latin: agenda, index, memorandum German: angst, blitz, bratwurst French: accident, chef, fierce Italian: concerto, pizza, scenario Japanese: bonsai, haiku, karaoke Calque, another term for loan translation, describes the process of literally or word-for-word translations to create new words, e.g. skyscraper Wolkenkratzer Lehnwort loan word blue-blood: (noble birth) Spanish sangre azul Devils advocate: (one who advocates the opposing side) Latin advocatus diaboli) flea market (a place selling secondhand goods) - French march aux puces masterpiece (A work of outstanding artistry or skill) - Dutch meesterstuk wisdom tooth: (The hindmost molar tooth on each side of both upper and lower jaws in man, usually cut about the age of twenty) Latin dentes sapienti (The stems are literally translated and then put back together, the meaning is the same as in the loan word.) e. Neologism / Coinage As neologism or coinage we identify the word formation process of inventing entirely new words. This is a very rare and uncommon method to create new words, but in the media, people try to outdo each other with more and better words to name their products. Often these trademark names are adopted by the masses and they become ''everyday words of language'' (Yule 2006, 53). e.g. 'google' Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) Xerox Kleenex f. Onomatopoeia - ''the sound associated with what is named'' e.g. boo

chirp click meow splash bang boom

References Elson, B. and Pickett, V. (1965). Introduction to morphology and syntax. Mexico: Summer Institute of Linguistics. Fromkin, V. (2010). Introduction to linguistics. Cengage Learning Asia Pte. Ltd. Delahunty, Gerald P., and Garvey, James J. (2010). The English Language: From Sound to Sense. Perspectives on Writing. Fort Collins, Colorado: The WAC Clearinghouse and Parlor Press. Available at Handke, Jurgen. (2012). Morphology-Derivation. The Virtual Linguistics Campus. Retrieved July 21, 2013 from v=8NARLoHy_mU Haspelmath, M. and A.D. Sims. (2010). Understanding morphology. London: Hodder Education. Stageberg, N.C. and D.D. Oaks. (2000 ). An introductory English grammar. MA: Heinle. Wagner, M. (2010). Word formation processes: how new words develop in the english language. Retrieved July 25, 2013 from Zapata Becerra, A. A. (2000). Handbook of general and applied linguistics. Trabajo de Ascenso sin publicar. Mrida, Venezuela: Escuela de Idiomas Modernos, Universidad de Los Andes Retrieved July 23, 2013 from s_of_words_and_word_formation_processes.pdf

The beginning of wisdom is a definition of terms. - Socrates Prepared by: Bernard Paderes Hayzel Santos