Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


Oxford Handbook of Corpus Phonology

Edited by Jacques Durand, Ulrike Gut, and Gjert Kristoffersen

Offers the first detailed examination of corpus phonology and serves as a practical guide for researchers interested in compiling or using phonological corpora

New from Cambridge University Press!


The Languages of the Jews: A Sociolinguistic History

By Bernard Spolsky

A vivid commentary on Jewish survival and Jewish speech communities that will be enjoyed by the general reader, and is essential reading for students and researchers interested in the study of Middle Eastern languages, Jewish studies, and sociolinguistics.

New from Brill!


Indo-European Linguistics

New Open Access journal on Indo-European Linguistics is now available!

Query Details

Query Subject:   Linking elements in compounds
Author:   Andrea Krott
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Linguistic LingField(s):  Morphology

Query:   I am working on linking morphemes in Dutch nominal compounds and I am
searching for other languages revealing a similar phenomenon. The only
languages I know about are Dutch, German, and Danish.

Here is a description of what linking morphemes in Dutch are: There
are two main linking morphemes in Dutch: -s- and -en-. They appear
between the two constituents of a nominal compound.


boekenkast (standard orthography)
boek-en-kast (morpheme breakdown)
''book shelf''

regeringsvorm (standard orthography)
regering-s-vorm (morpheme breakdown)
'type of government'

Historically, linking morphemes in Dutch are old genitive singular
suffixes or nominative plural suffixes. Syncronically, the linking -s-
often cannot be interpreted as a plural or genitive suffix of the
first constituent (e.g., 'regerings' is not the correct plural form
for 'regering'). It is also questionable whether the -s- still bares
any semantic information. On the other hand, the linking -en- only
occurs after nouns which syncronically form their plural with -en, and
there is evidence that -en- still bares the plural meaning.

In Dutch linking morphemes are productively used in novel compounds.
People mostly agree on which linking morpheme to use in a novel
compound. Although, they have a flexible sense of what is ''correct''
(unlike inflectional morphology).

I would be thankful for any information about any language with any
kind of linking elements in compounds (not only in nominal compounds).


Andrea Krott M.A.

Interfaculty Research Unit for Language and Speech &
Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics
Wundtlaan 1
PB 310, 6500 AH Nijmegen
The Netherlands

LL Issue: 10.1233
Date posted: 21-Aug-1999


Sums main page