Word as a stratification of formats


Raffaele Simone



The paper proposes to view word in terms of a stratification of formats of different nature, partially interacting with each other. A Format in general is an abstract layout of properties, characterizing not a single word but entire classes of words. The proposed formats include the Entry Format, the Morphological, Phonological, Semantic and Graphematic ones. Entry Format and Semantic Format are discussed in detail, with examples from various languages. The paper shows how the notion of format may be of use in descriptive as well as typological analysis and also as a solution to leftover problems, like the one of ‘impossible words’.


Keywords: word • parts of speech • lexicology • language format

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