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Morphological Types of Languages

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Katie Dicken

on 20 September 2013

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Transcript of Morphological Types of Languages

Morphological Types of Languages
Classifying Languages by Morphological Type
So far we have talked about types of morphemes and word formation processes.

Based on the way that languages do or do not use morphological processes, we can classify them into types of languages:
Analytic Languages
Analytic languages use sequences of free morphemes to make sentences. Each word is a single morpheme used by itself with meaning and function.

Also called

Mandarin Chinese is a classic example.
Synthetic Languages
Synthetic languages have bound morphemes that attach to other morpheme, so that a word may have many meaningful elements.

Word order in synthetic languages is not always crucial to the meaning.

There are three subtypes of synthetic languages: agglutinating, fusional, and polysynthetic.
Agglutinating Languages
Bound morphemes attach to other morphemes, but "loosely" so, so that it is easy to see the boundaries between morphemes.

Hungarian and Swahili are both examples of this type.
Fusional Languages
Bound morphemes attach to stems, like agglutinating languages, BUT they may not be easily separated from the stem. It is often difficult to distinguish morpheme boundaries.

Spanish and Russian are examples.
File 4.3
Polysynthetic Languages
Attaches several affixes to a stem to indicate grammatical relationships and to form highly complex words.

Sora, a language spoken in India, is an example of this.
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