Acquisition of German diminutive formation and compounding in a comparative perspective

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Early phases of first language acquisition can shed light on general preferences in diminutive formation and compounding, as is demonstrated in this typological characterization of German diminutives and compounds and their acquisition. The role of typology is shown to be similar to that in acquisition of inflection in the parameters of morphological richness, productivity, and transparency, but different in other respects. The impact of frequency in children’s input by caregivers on their output appears to be important in corresponding token frequencies, but very restricted in predicting order of emergence.


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