Morphology and language change

Geert Booij

in The Grammar of Words

Second edition

Published in print July 2007 | ISBN: 9780199226245
Published online September 2007 | e-ISBN: 9780191710360 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Textbooks in Linguistics

 Morphology and language change

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Word formation processes lead to lexical innovation, and hence to changes in the lexical conventions of a language. Borrowing is another form of lexical innovation. Existing complex words are subject to processes of erosion, with the effect that they might lose their transparency. New complex words also arise in the course of history through the processes of grammaticalization and univerbation. Language users inspect their language system continuously, which may lead to reanalysis of complex words and changes in the morphology of a language.

Keywords: internal change; external change; lexical innovation; grammaticalization; word structure change

Chapter.  8469 words. 

Subjects: Grammar, Syntax and Morphology

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