Category-specific effects in Welsh mutation

Michael Hammond, Elise Bell, Skye Anderson, Peredur Webb-Davies, Diane Ohala, Andrew Carnie, Heddwen Brooks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In this paper we investigate category-specific effects through the lens of Welsh mutation. Smith (2011) and Moreton et al. (2017) show that English distinguishes nouns and proper nouns in an experimental blending task. Here we show that Welsh distinguishes nouns, verbs, personal names, and place names in the mutation system. We demonstrate these effects experimentally in a translation task designed to elicit mutation intuitions and in several corpus studies. In addition, we show that these effects correlate with lexical frequency. Deeper statistical analysis and a review of the English data suggests that frequency is a more explanatory factor than part of speech in both languages. We therefore argue that these category-specific effects can be reduced to lexical frequency effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1
JournalGlossa
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

Keywords

  • Celtic
  • Frequency
  • Morphology
  • Mutation
  • Part-of-speech
  • Welsh

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Linguistics and Language
  • Language and Linguistics

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