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Realised overabundance in Estonian noun paradigms: A corpus study

Realised overabundance in Estonian noun paradigms: A corpus study In this paper we investigate the use of parallel forms, or morphological overabundance, in Estonian nouns, which are richly inflected in fourteen cases and two numbers. The complexity of the nominal inflection system derives from the multiplicity of declension classes, which allow for the availability of parallel forms in many morphological paradigm cells. Whereas previous studies of overabundance in nominal inflection have focussed on available overabundance in particular cells, this study focuses on the actual usage of overabundant forms, or ‘realised overabundance’, taking as a starting point those lexemes which are attested with two parallel forms in the corpus. Following the criteria proposed by Thornton (2019), we investigate the canonicity of realised overabundance in Estonian, in terms of its extent across both lexemes and cells. In addition, frequency ratios of alternate variants and conditions on their usage are investigated by comparing lexemes in the most overabundant cells. Finally, we tackle the connections between morphological overabundance and syntactic argumenthood, exploring the hypothesis that parallel forms serve distinct functions. We find no contextual preference in terms of which of the two forms is used. In general, we find realised overabundance to be restricted and more canonical than potential overabundance. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png WORD Structure Edinburgh University Press

Realised overabundance in Estonian noun paradigms: A corpus study

WORD Structure , Volume 16 (2-3): 22 – Nov 1, 2023

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
1750-1245
eISSN
1755-2036
DOI
10.3366/word.2023.0227
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the use of parallel forms, or morphological overabundance, in Estonian nouns, which are richly inflected in fourteen cases and two numbers. The complexity of the nominal inflection system derives from the multiplicity of declension classes, which allow for the availability of parallel forms in many morphological paradigm cells. Whereas previous studies of overabundance in nominal inflection have focussed on available overabundance in particular cells, this study focuses on the actual usage of overabundant forms, or ‘realised overabundance’, taking as a starting point those lexemes which are attested with two parallel forms in the corpus. Following the criteria proposed by Thornton (2019), we investigate the canonicity of realised overabundance in Estonian, in terms of its extent across both lexemes and cells. In addition, frequency ratios of alternate variants and conditions on their usage are investigated by comparing lexemes in the most overabundant cells. Finally, we tackle the connections between morphological overabundance and syntactic argumenthood, exploring the hypothesis that parallel forms serve distinct functions. We find no contextual preference in terms of which of the two forms is used. In general, we find realised overabundance to be restricted and more canonical than potential overabundance.

Journal

WORD StructureEdinburgh University Press

Published: Nov 1, 2023

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