University of Pennsylvania Working Papers in Linguistics


In this paper I argue that apparent complementary, phonologically conditioned distribution in a group of affixes with the same function (diminutive) does not necessarily imply that they are allomorphs. I show it on the example of Russian diminutive suffixes [-ok, -ik, -t͡ɕik], previously considered to be allomorphs. I also show that semantic factors may contribute to the choice of a suffix realization on a par with phonological factors. I call such suffixes pseudo-allomorphs, as they have phonologically conditioned distribution as well as different meanings.



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