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Lecture 6

Lecture 6 Notes

Course Code
Chandan Narayan

of 3
Linguistics lecture 6October 21, 2010
·A study of internal structure of words
Morpheme: the smallest unit in a language that carries a meaning or grammatical
-Unhappy= un+happy
-Singers= sing+er+s
Free vs. Bound morphemes
·A free morpheme is one which cans stand by itself as an independent word
oHappy, sing, hope
·A bound morpheme is one which cannot stand alone as an independent word; it must
be attached to another morpheme
oUn-, -er, -s, -less
oBound morphemes are written with a hyphen to indicate their bound status
Simple vs. Complex
·Simple words
oSome words consist if a single morpheme
·Complex words
oWords may contain two or more morphemes
Roots vs. Affixes
·Complex words consist of a root morpheme plus one or more affixes
oCompounds are exceptions to this statement
·Root: the morpheme which functions as the major meaning-bearing element in a
oA root always belongs to a lexical category e.g. noun (N), verb (V), adjective
(A), or preposition (P)
oNouns typically refer to concrete and abstract things (tree, intelligence,
oVerbs tend to denote actions (depart, teach...)
oAdjectives usually name properties (nice, red...)
oPrepositions generally encode spatial relations (in, near...)
·Affix: a morpheme which must be attached to a root (more accurately, a base)
oDo not belong to a lexical category
oAll are bound morphemes
Tree Diagrams
·The internal structure of a word can be represented using a tree diagram
NAf V Af
Book s teach er
Base: is the form to which an affix is added. In many cases, the base is also the root, but not
N-hope is the root and also the base for the
Adj-less. Hopeless is the base for the affix
hope less ness
Prefix: affix before the base
Suffix: affix that is attached after the base
Infix: inserted inside another morpheme
Reduplication: an affix that is formed by repeating the whole base (total reduplication) or
part of the base (partial reduplication) indicates repetition of some sort
Infixation in English?
·Ma-infication in American English
· Infixation in profanity
Reduplication in English
·Found mostly in expressive informal vocabulary
oBow-wow, fuzzy-wuzzy etc..
-All affixes are bound morphemes. But, not all roots are free morphemes
oLingu-ist : lingu is a root but cant stand alone
- -Free -bound
-root-dog, happy, teach.. -kempt, lingu..
-affix-n/a un-, re-, -less
-sometimes, in grammatical function can be marked in ways other than adding an
ointernal change: a process that substitutes one non-morphemic segment
for another to mark a grammatical segment
sing (present) sang (past)
otone representation
·a single morpheme may have variant pronounciations. The variant forms of a
morpheme are called its allomorphs
· the indefinite article of English has two allomorphs (aand an)
oan orange
oa banana
othe choice of an or a depends on whether the following word begins with a
vowel or a consonant
othe English past tense morpheme has variant forms depending on the final
sound of the verb : [d] vs [t]
dragged, packed
after voiceless stops, you use the [t]
for each morpheme:
determine if it is a root or an affix
then prefix, suffix, affix....