LINGUIST List 3.899

Fri 13 Nov 1992

Disc: Morphemization

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  1. "Bruce E. Nevin", morphemization

Message 1: morphemization

Date: Fri, 13 Nov 92 12:58:54 ESmorphemization
From: "Bruce E. Nevin" <bnevinccb.bbn.com>
Subject: morphemization

In e.g. "the La Brea tar pits" the spanish phrase is treated as a
name. Names have the peculiarity that they need not be analyzable,
any pronounceable string can be designated a name.

Embedded archaisms (Pendle Hill etc.) are a special case of the more
general phenomenon by which a morpheme sequence becomes dissociated from
its original analytical meaning and comes to be treated as a single
morpheme with perhaps shifted meaning. Shirley Silver calls this
"morphemization" in her contribution to the 1970 Hokan Conference
(proceedings published by Mouton in 1976 as _Hokan Studies_) and it is a
most pervasive bedevilment for comparativists in the Americas--something
of which Greenberg is apparently blissfully unaware.

I realize that the term has been given a different meaning in
Generativist studies of derivation.

 Bruce Nevin
 bnbbn.com
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