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Free Morphemes
Types of Morphemes Bound Morphemes Derivational Morpheme Word Formation Processes Inflectional Morpheme

Morphology: The Words of Language

Eponyms Affixation BackFormation


Word Formation Processes


Acronyms Clipping


The study of word structure and word formation Combined to form sentences in a language such as English

Structure of words
Simple Words- consisting single Morpheme(a word that cannot be analyzed into smaller meaningful parts (eg: item , five , chunk , the) Complex words- consist of a root,plus one or more affixes (eg: items, walked, dirty) Compound words-formed from two or more simple or complex words Eg: (landlord, red-hot, window cleaner)




Prefix - beginning

Root main word

Suffix - ending

A prefix is a word part added to the beginning of a root word. A prefix is a derivational morpheme that changes the meaning of a word.
Prefix mis in Base Word understand correct New Word Mis-understand In-correct

Prefixes We Know im in

Examples improper incomplete

non dis

nonstop disagree

Prefix unimonoautoduobitripentahexapolymulti-

Meaning one one self two two three five six many many

Example unicycle monologue autobiography duodecimal bifocal tripod pentagon hexadecimal polygon multicolored

Prefixes can be classified according to different principles. 1. According to the lexico-grammatical character of the base prefixes are usually added to, they may be:
a) deverbal (those added to the verbal base): re- (rewrite); over- (overdo); out- (outstay); b) denominal (those added to the nominal base): (unbutton); de- (detrain); ex- (ex-president); c) deadjectival (those added to the adjectival base): un(uneasy); bi- (biannual). d) deadverbial (those added to the adverbial base): un(unfortunately); in- independently).

2.According to the class of words they preferably form prefixes are divided into:
a) verb-forming prefixes: en-/em(enclose, embed); be- (befriend); de(dethrone); b) noun-forming prefixes: non(non-smoker); sub(sub-committee); ex- (ex-husband) d) adverb-forming prefixes: un(unfortunately); up- (uphill).

c)adjective-forming prefixes: un(unfair); il(illiterate); ir(irregular);

3. Semantically prefixes fall into:

the prefix ex- has only one meaning former ex-boxer; the prefix dis- has four meanings: not (disadvantage); reversal or absence of an action or state (diseconomy, disaffirm); removal of (to disbranch); completeness or intensification of an unpleasant action (disgruntled).

4.According to their generalizing denotational meaning prefixes fall into:

a) negative prefixes: un- (ungrateful); non(non-political); in- (incorrect); dis(disloyal); a- (amoral);

b) reversative prefixes: un2- (untie); de(decentralize); dis2- (disconnect);

c) pejorative prefixes: mis- (mispronounce); mal- (maltreat); pseudo- (pseudo-scientific);

a) prefixes of time and order: fore(foretell); pre- (pre-war); post- (post-war), ex- (ex-president); b) prefix of repetition: re- (rebuild, rewrite); c) locative prefixes: super- (superstructure), sub- (subway), inter- (inter-continental), trans- (transatlantic).

Group of letters attached to ends of words Can indicate what part of speech the word belongs Also changes the meaning A derivational Morpheme
Base Word child friend Suffix hood ship New Word Child-hood Friend-ship

Suffix able -ible -al -ance -ence -ic -ion

Meaning able to be relating to

Example manageable defensible regal resistance independence heroic

state of


-ism -hood
-ity -ment -er -or -ite -y -ful

quality of

patriotism brotherhood
legality puzzlement

one who

writer advisor Mennonite

full of

soapy wishful

Suffixes can be classified into different types in accordance with different principles: 1. According to the lexical-grammatical character of the base suffixes are usually added to, they may be:
a) deverbal suffixex (those added to the verbal base): -er (builder); -ing (writing); b) denominal suffixes (those added to the nominal base): -less (timeless); -ful (hopeful); -ist (scientist); -some (troublesome); c) deajectival suffixes (those added to the adjectival base): -en (widen); -ly (friendly); -ish (whitish); ness (brightness).

2. According to the part of speech formed suffixes fall into several groups:

a) noun-forming suffixes: -age (breakage, bondage); -ance/-ence (assistance, reference); -dom (freedom, kingdom); -er (teacher, baker); -ess (actress, hostess); -ing (building, wasing); b) adjective-forming suffixes: -able/-ible/-uble (favourable, incredible, soluble); -al (formal, official); -ic (dynamic); -ant/-ent (repentant, dependent);

a) numeral-forming suffixes: -fold (twofold); -teen (fourteen); -th (sixth); -ty (thirty); b) verb-forming suffixes: -ate (activate); -er (glimmer); -fy/-ify (terrify, specify); -ize (minimize); -ish (establish); c) adverb-forming suffixes: -ly (quickly, coldly); -ward/-wards (backward, northwards); -wise (likewise).

3. Semantically suffixes fall into: a) Monosemantic:the suffix -ess has only one meaning female tigress, tailoress; b) Polysemantic: the suffix -hood has two meanings: 1) condition or quality falsehood, womanhood; 2) collection or group brotherhood.

4. According to their generalizing denotational meaning suffixes may fall into several groups. E.g., noun-suffixes fall into those denoting:
a) the agent of the action: -er (baker); -ant (accountant); b) appurtenance: -an/-ian (Victorian, Russian); -ese (Chinese); c) collectivity: -dom (officialdom); -ry (pleasantry); d) Diminutiveness:-ie (birdie); -let (cloudlet); -ling (wolfling).

5. According to their stylistic reference suffixes may be classified into:

a) those characterized by neutral stylistic reference: able (agreeable); -er (writer); -ing (meeting); b) those having a certain stylistic value: -oid (asteroid); -tron (cyclotron). These suffixes occur usually in terms and are bookish.

The distinction between derivational and inflectional morphemes relates to the function they perform :

Derivation produces entirely new words (lexemes) by adding affixes

Inflection adds grammatical information to an existing word without changing its word class.

Example 1 : `go' and `went' and `gone' and `going' are all members of the English lexeme `go Example 2 : Find, finds, found, and finding are forms of the English lexeme find.

In contrast to inflectional affixes, derivational morphemes allow us to create new words. Often the word class changes when derivational affixes are added to a lexeme. Derivational affixes can be prefixes or suffixes. Inflection in English only permits suffixes.

Example 1 : happy (ADJECTIVE) happily (ADVERB) Example 2 : teach (VERB) teacher (NOUN) Example 3 : courage (NOUN) encourage (VERB)

In English, derivational prefixes have a DERIVATION noticeable tendency to change the meaning of a word Derivational suffixes often change the word class. Example (prefixes) : happy unhappy activate deactivate act react

Examples (suffixes) : teach teacher book bookish sweet sweeten

Inflectional morphemes encode grammatical information. Inflectional morphemes are always suffixes.

Examples : 1. John plays the piano 2. I am singing in the rain 3. The two dogs belong to Mike 4. Lisas car broke down 5. The mouse is eaten by the cat

Base, Stem and Root

In order to make the segmentation of words into smaller parts a little clearer, we differentiate between the base, the stem and the root of a word in morphological terms.

base : reactions stem : reaction (s) root : (re) action (s)

The stem is the base with all inflectional suffixes removed, whereas the root is what remains after all affixes have been taken off.

Morphs, Morphemes, Allomorphs

The fact that plural number in English can be marked with several inflectional suffixes (-s, -en) or by no (visible) suffix at all points to a distinction you already know from phonology :

Morphs A concrete part of a word that cannot be divided into smaller parts
Morphemes The meaning distinguishing, abstract dimension of morphs, e.g. something like the plural morpheme Allomorphs Different realizations of the same morpheme, e.g. -s, -en and nothing for the plural morpheme dogs, oxen and fish.

Word Formation Processes

How new words are being formed in the language. The process consists of a combination of morphemes that are rule-governed (a new word is formed).
Morphemes : The Words of Language

Examples of Word Formatian Processes : Abbreviations Blending Acronyms Clipping Affixation Compounding Back Eponyms Formation

1. Abbreviations
A shortened form of a word or phrase. In Latin, it means short. Initialisms are a type of abbreviation formed by the initial letters of a word or phrase.

Although abbreviation is largely a convention of written language, sometimes abbreviations carry over into spoken language. Abbreviation is related to both the word formation processes of clipping and blending.

For example:
Written Abbreviations Apr. April cm centimeter(s) d. died, died in dept. department Dr. doctor Jr. Junior Mr. Mister oz ounce(s) Sun. Sunday yd yard(s)

For example:
Spoken-Written Abbreviations

A.M. ante meridiem [in the morning] B.C.E. Before Common Era GOP Grand Old Party (Republican Party) HIV Human Immunodeficiency Virus i.e. id est [that is] JFK John Fitzgerald Kennedy OJ orange juice PMS premenstrual syndrome RSVP rpondez s'il vous plait VIP very important person

Words formed by the word formation process in which an initialism is pronounced as a word.

Acronyms are related to the word formation process of abbreviation.

Other examples of acronyms in English include:

ASAP as soon as possible AWOL absent without leave laser - light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation radar - radio detection and ranging scuba - self-contained underwater breathing apparatus TESOL Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages RAM - Random Access Memory CD - Compact Disk

Building up words by adding affixes to the main component of the word. Depending on whether the affix is attached to the beginning of the word or the end of the word, we will have either prefixes or suffixes.

Suffix is placed after the stem of a word. For example :

Prefix is placed before the root of a word. For example :

4. Back-formation
A process in which a suffix is taken away from a noun to form a new verb.
Examples : editor - edit or edit television television - ion televise babysitter - babysitter - er babysit

5. blending
Process of creating a new word by combining the parts of two different words, usually the beginning of one word and the end of another.

For examples :
brunch is a blend of breakfast and lunch. simultaneous+ broadcast simulcast smoke + fog smog spoon + fork spork smart + sassy smassy

6. Clipping
Process of creating new words by shortening parts of a longer word.

7. Compounding
Process that forms new words from two or more independent words Examples :

An eponym is a person or thing, whether real or fictional, after which a particular place, tribe, era, discovery, or other item is named or thought to be named.
Eponyms are aspects of etymology.

A synonym of "eponym" is namegiver (not to be confused with namesake.) Someone who (or something that) is referred to with the adjective eponymous is the eponym of something.

An example is: "Lon Theremin, the eponymous inventor of the theremin."

Process of forming new words either by doubling an entire word (total reduplication) or part of a word (partial reduplication) English makes use of reduplication very sporadically Total reduplication is extremely rare! Humpty
partial reduplicatio n dumpty hocus - pocus

A relationship between forms of a word wherein one form cannot be phonologically or morphologically derived from the other (this process is rare). am vs. wa s vs. Examples :
go wen t