Why are there more English words ending in -ness than ending in -ity? What
is it about some endings that makes them more widely usable than others?
Can we measure the differences in the facility with which the various
affixes are used? Does the difference in facility reflect a difference in
the way we treat words containing these affixes in the brain? These are the
questions examined in this book. Morphological productivity has, over the
centuries, been a major factor in providing the huge vocabulary of English
and remains one of the most contested areas in the study of word-formation
This book takes an eclectic approach to the topic, applying the findings
for morphology to syntax and phonology. Bringing together the results of
twenty years' work in the field, it provides new insights and considers a
wide range of linguistic and psycholinguistic evidence.