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Journal Article

Probability in the grammar of German and Dutch: Interfixation in triconstituent compounds

MPS-Authors

Krott,  Andrea
Language Production Group Levelt, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;
Other Research, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

Schreuder,  Robert
Interfacultaire Werkgroep Taal- en Spraakgedrag, external;
Other Research, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

Baayen,  R. Harald
Pioneer, external;
Other Research, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

Krott_2004_probability.pdf
(Publisher version), 221KB

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Citation

Krott, A., Libben, G., Jarema, G., Dressler, W., Schreuder, R., & Baayen, R. H. (2004). Probability in the grammar of German and Dutch: Interfixation in triconstituent compounds. Language and Speech, 47(1), 83-106.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-1EB1-E
Abstract
This study addresses the possibility that interfixes in multiconstituent nominal compounds in German and Dutch are functional as markers of immediate constituent structure.We report a lexical statistical survey of interfixation in the lexicons of German and Dutch which shows that all interfixes of German and one interfix of Dutch are significantly more likely to appear at the major constituent boundary than expected under chance conditions. A series of experiments provides evidence that speakers of German and Dutch are sensitive to the probabilistic cues to constituent structure provided by the interfixes. Thus, our data provide evidence that probability is part and parcel of grammatical competence.