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::Morpheme

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Examples
  • "Unbreakable" comprises three morphemes: un- (a bound morpheme signifying "not"), -break- (the root, a free morpheme), and -able (a free morpheme signifying "can be done").
  • Allomorphs of the plural morpheme for regular nouns: /s/ (e.g. in cats /kæts/), /ɨz/ (e.g. in dishes /dɪʃɨz/), and /z/ (e.g. in dogs /dɒɡz/).

In linguistics, a morpheme is the smallest grammatical unit in a language. In other words, it is the smallest meaningful unit of a language. The field of study dedicated to morphemes is called morphology. A morpheme is not identical to a word, and the principal difference between the two is that a morpheme may or may not stand alone, whereas a word, by definition, is freestanding. When it stands by itself, it is considered a root because it has a meaning of its own (e.g. the morpheme cat) and when it depends on another morpheme to express an idea, it is an affix because it has a grammatical function (e.g. the –s in cats to specify that it is plural).<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> Every word comprises one or more morphemes. The more combinations a morpheme is found in, the more productive it is said to be.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>


Morpheme sections
Intro   Classification of morphemes   Additional notes   Morphological analysis   Changing definitions of morpheme   See also    References    External links   

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