Lexical Derivation and the Form Class of Word Associations

Richardson, John T. E. (1976). Lexical Derivation and the Form Class of Word Associations. Language and Speech, 19(4) pp. 313–317.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/002383097601900402


Certain words are claimed by linguists to be derived out of simple lexical items. Such words should therefore be likely to elicit free associates from the grammatical category of their stems. Simple words, on the other hand, should follow the usual rule of eliciting associates from their own grammatical category. Previous research suggests that this is the case, but provides no criterion for distinguishing between simple and derived words. The present study explicitly specifies which words are to be regarded as derived, and finds no effect of the grammatical category of the stem upon the category of the associate.

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