Blending as a Type of Word-Formation in English


Seminar Paper, 2013

13 Pages, Grade: 1,7

Anonymous


Excerpt

Table of Contents

1.Introduction

2. Classification of Blends
2.1 Modified Blends
2.2 Meaningful Blends

3. Categories of Blends and their source words

4. Structure of Blending
4.1 First Rule for Blending – Formation
4.2 Second Rule for Blending – Formation
4.3 Third Rule for Blending – Formation

5. Conclusion

Bibliography

1. Introduction

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe;

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll[1]

Lewis Carroll invented in his book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland two new words which are nowadays often seen in literature and are well known today. Slithy derivates from the words lithe and slimy and means something like a gentle or smooth slime. On the other hand mimsy, from flimsy and miserable, indicates something fragile and wretched. But these words are not the first word – formation processes visible in the literature of the last centuries. For example Robert Greene used in 1592 in his book The Defence of Conny Catching the word foolosophy which is a blending from foolish and philosophy. In the seventeenth century Samuel Purchas mentioned the word knavigation, a knavish navigation (Pilgrimage, 1613).[2]

This visible phenomenon of creating new words is a word – formation process called blending. Blending belongs to a “class of complex words”[3] which links two or more words together. They are formed by deleting parts from one or both of the original words and these are composed to a new word which is called blend. Blending is a common and especially a creative word – formation process nowadays.

A classic definition given by Laurie Bauer is: “A blend may be defined as a new lexeme formed from parts of two (or possibly more) other words in such a way that there is no transparent analysis into morphs.”[4]

As a part of this term paper I will show how the blends are classified into modified and meaningful blends and how they are categorized, including the categorization of their source words.

I am going to answer the question how blends are structured and what kind of rules there are for their formation. The term paper will answer all these questions by analyzing blends and their source words and this will show that blending is a word – formation process.

2. Classification of Blends

2.1 Modified Blends

Modified blends are blends in which “the first element modifies the second element”[5].

(1.) breath + analyzer = breathalyzer
(2.) motor + hotel = motel
(3.) motor + camp = mocamp
(4.) science + fiction = sci-fi [6]
(5.) binary + digit = bit [7]
(6.) guess + estimate = guesstimate
(7.) fan + magazine = fanzine [8]
(8.) helicopter + airport = heliport [9]
(9.) internal + communication = intercom [10]
(10.) slang + language = slanguage
(11.) aqua + aerobics = aquarobics [11]
(12.) entrepreneur + porn = entreporneur [12]

In (1.) it is visible that a breathalyzer is a special kind of analyzer which analyzes the breath. In (3.) a mocamp is a motor camp as well as in (2.) a motel is a motor hotel.

2.2 Meaningful Blends

Meaningful blends “share properties of the referents of both elements”[13].

(13.) boat + hotel = boatel
(14.) breakfast + lunch = brunch
(15.) modulator + demodulator = modem
(16.) smoke + fog = smog
(17.) Spanish + English = Spanglish
(18.) ability + skill = askillity [14]
(19.) departure + start = destarture [15]
(20.) enforcement + farce = enfarcement [16]
(21.) alcohol + holiday = alcoholiday [17]
(22.) lithe + slimy = slithy [18]
(23.) American + Indian = Amerind [19]
(24.) car + barbecue = carbecue [20]

A boatel is a boat and a hotel at the same time visible in (13.) as well as slithy means lithe and slimy (22.).A smog is a fog formed by smoke (16.).

3. Categories of Blends and their source words

Mostly both source words belong to one semantic category like the formed blend.

(4.) science + fiction = sci – fi

science = noun fiction = noun sci – fi = noun

(13.) boat + hotel = boatel

boat = noun hotel = noun boatel = noun

(14.) breakfast + lunch = brunch

breakfast = noun lunch = noun brunch = noun

(17.) Spanish + English = Spanglish

Spanish = noun English = noun Spanglish = noun

(24.) car + barbecue = carbecue

car = noun barbecue = noun carbecue = noun

In the given examples the original words and the resulting blends belong all to the category of nouns. But of course, there are examples which deviate from the rule:

(5.) binary + digit = bit

binary = adjective digit = noun bit = noun

(6.) guess + estimate = guesstimate

guess = adjective, noun, verb estimate = noun guesstimate = verb, noun

In (5.) the first source word binary is an adjective, the second source word digit is a noun and the resulting blend bit is a noun. In (6.) the first source guess can be defined as an adjective, a noun or a verb. The second source word estimate is a noun as well as the blending guesstimate which can be a verb, too.

4. Structure of Blending

4.1 First Rule for Blending – Formation

Plag defines a rule for Blending – Formation by combining “the first part of the first element [ . . . ] with the second part of the second element”.[21] This rule can be shown in the following equation:

[...]


[1] http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/19102-twas-brillig-and-the-slithy-toves-did-gyre-and-gimble

[2] Adams, Valerie. An Introduction to Modern English Word – Formation. London: Longman: 1973. 149.

[3] Plag, Ingo. Word-Formation in English. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2003. 121.

[4] Bauer, Laurie. English Word – Formation. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1983. 234.

[5] Plag 2003: 122.

[6] Plag 2003: 122.

[7] Adams 1973. 146.

[8] Carter, Ronald and Michael McCarthy. Cambridge Grammar of English: A Comprehensive Guide. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2006. 483.

[9] Carter 2006: 483

[10] http://www.brighthubeducation.com/esl-lesson-plans/59679-forming-new-words-compounds-clipping-and-blends/

[11] http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/blend.htm

[12] Schmid, Hans – Jörg. English Morphology and Word – Formation: An Introduction. Berlin: Erich Schmidt Verlag, 2011. 219.

[13] Plag 2003: 122.

[14] Welte, Werner. Englische Morphologie und Wortbildung. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 1988. 292 – 293.

[15] Welte 1988: 292.

[16] Welte 1988: 292.

[17] Welte 1988: 292.

[18] Bauer 1983: 234.

[19] Adams 1973: 155.

[20] Bauer 1983: 236.

[21] Plag 2003: 123.

Excerpt out of 13 pages

Details

Title
Blending as a Type of Word-Formation in English
College
University of Würzburg  (Institut für Anglistik und Amerikanistik)
Course
English Morphology and Word - Formation
Grade
1,7
Year
2013
Pages
13
Catalog Number
V232366
ISBN (eBook)
9783656489160
ISBN (Book)
9783656492603
File size
569 KB
Language
English
Tags
Blend, Blending, Word - Formation
Quote paper
Anonymous, 2013, Blending as a Type of Word-Formation in English, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/232366

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