Reuze bedankt, het was echt top! - Een vergelijkend onderzoek naar ‘loskoppeling’ van samenstellingscomponenten | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 52, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1876-9071
  • E-ISSN: 2214-5729


By means of a comparative corpus study, this paper investigates the rise of new adjectives and adverbs from nominal compound members through a process of ‘debonding’. This is ‘a composite change whereby a bound morpheme in a specific linguistic context becomes a free morpheme’ (Norde 2009, p. 186). It can be illustrated by the adjectival and adverbial uses of the Dutch compound member (een ; ; ; ). It will be argued that debonding is subject to a series of language-specific factors, in particular the degree of compound cohesion and the complexity of adjective inflection. These factors predict that debonding will be more common in French and English than in German and Dutch. However, debonding still occurs in the latter. This can be accounted for by an interaction of multiple processes. Finally, a specific case study of the Dutch word will indicate how and which different processes interact in the rise of its adjectival uses.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): affixoid; compounding; debonding; degrammaticalization; language comparison
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