Regularity vs anomaly: The acquisition of Hebrew inflectional morphology

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Abstract

The paper examines the acquisition of selected aspects of the inflectional system of Modern Hebrew, a language rich in bound morphology. By age three, children acquire the major inflectionally marked categories of the system, in the sense that they make semantically relevant distinctions of tense, person, number, and gender. Certain morphologically complex forms are simplified by neutralization or reformulation or by analytic paraphrases of bound constructions. Various anomalous forms are handled by regularization of lexical exceptions or by conflating forms belonging to different lexical patterns, while forms which are opaque due to neutralization of historically distinct root consonants or to inaccessibility of rules governing their alternations are processed by reference to certain ‘paradigms’ taken as basic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-282
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Child Language
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1981

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