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No irregular forms in agglutinating languages?
- A feature that distinguishes fusional languages from agglutinating ones is the occurrence of irregular forms: this wouldn't happen in an agglutinating language since the synthetic elements retain a meaning of their own.
This sentence -- to me -- suggests that in agglutinating languages there are no irregular forms. Of course, this isn't true. The statement should be rewritten, although I'm not sure what it was meant to express. Maybe some examples?
Also, I couldn't understand what would a fusional language be, on the other hand, the definition at http://www.sil.org/linguistics/GlossaryOfLinguisticTerms/WhatIsAFusionalLanguage.htm with an immediate example made it clear.
- Esperanto.....is a particularly clean and simple example of a fusional language.
This seems pretty odd. Most linguists (e.g. John C. Wells in Lingvistikaj Aspektoj de Esperanto) describe Esperanto as agglutinative. The vast majority of Esperanto's grammatical endings and affixes have one morpheme per morph. Arguable exceptions include the verb endings (which indicate both tense and mood in one morpheme) and the participle endings (which indicate tense, aspect and voice in one morpheme). And there is no allomorphy in Esperanto except when proper names are mutated in adding the special affectionate-nickname suffixes. All other morpheme boundaries are agglutinative, according to Wells, and he calculates and agglunativity index of 0.9999 for Esperanto (compared with 0.67 for Swahili). --Jim Henry 23:19, 6 Aug 2004 (UTC)
- I wouldn't call allomorphy an inflectional process. Nevertheless, I agree that Esperanto cannot be viewed as a canonical example of a fusional language, or even a suitable example. With the noun morphology as an example, gehundetojn male and female puppies (acc.) is totally agglutinative:
- Granted, the Esperanto verb might be somewhat less so, but in Navajo, a language that is certainly agglutinative, there is a lot of inflection in the verbal aspect prefixes in particular. I'll remove this from the article. thefamouseccles 00:53, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)
bad example for Latin
From the article:
- A good illustration of fusionality in language is the Latin word boni, "good men". The ending -i denotes masculine gender, nominative case, and plural number. Changing any of these features requires replacement of the suffix -i with something else.
This last sentence isn't even true because boni is also "of the good man" (genitive, masculine, singular) and "of the good thing" (genitive, neuter, singular). Perhaps a better example would be "bonus", because for that one you really do need to replace the suffix to change gender, number, and case. I'm going to change this. –Andyluciano 19:04, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
Is this described properly?
I'm not sure the topic here is described properly (and regardless it is certainly not clear). Specifically what is the article really trying to say is the key difference between inflection and agglutination? Among other things using German as a prime example of a strictly "inflectional" language seems like an odd choice (granted I have seen this done in other places but it seems illogical). It is hard to argue that German is not "agglutinative". In fact it is German's ability to built complex words from simpler words that is one of its most powerful features and some scholars have argued that's what makes it a good language for science and philosophy (i.e. that you can easily create a word for a new concept that is intrinsicly clear without having to go to a lot of effort to define it). But at the same time German is also a substantially inflected language (albeit perhaps not as much as some languages).
Latin and its descendants, by contrast, can easily be said to be almost entirely free of any agglutinative nature. It is difficult to find examples of anything agglutinative in their writings (there are some examples but they are exceptional).
Anybody who is more of a linguist than I am want to comment?
--Mcorazao 19:41, 30 July 2007 (UTC)
"Fusional languages are generally believed to have descended from agglutinating languages"
See, this is not true. And the entire section keeps on not being true. Inflectional languages don't necessarily lose their inflections. Often inflections are added. Languages don't "know" where they are in terms of "evolution". They just are. Everything is pretty much random. French is on a track to becoming an agglutinating language. Spanish has lost a lot of Latin inflections, but it has also innovated and added a lot. Polish has a mostly agglutinating verbal system. Who can say for English, which is all over the place. Generalising about these states is just false. Vegfarandi (talk) 11:24, 30 June 2011 (UTC)
- Actually, after reading the Agglutinative language page, I think I have an idea of what it is. Words in agglutinative languages can be clearly separated into the individual morphemes (each of which has a clear meaning), but the separate morphemes in words of fusional languages are less clear (as demonstrated by the "otouto" Japanese example on the Agglutinative language page). This page should have a similar example, so the difference can be made clear. --V2Blast (talk) 22:49, 2 July 2010 (UTC)
English "nearly analytic"
I'm not an expert in these questions, but it doesn't sound like a very scientific statement that English is a "nearly analytic" language. A perfectly analytic language would not have any inflection at all. "Nearly analytic" would be analytic with just one or two little exceptions. But English has inflection everywhere: two comparative forms plus an adverb form for most adjectives, two number forms for most nouns, between three and eight forms for verbs.
English is the most analytic of all European languages and in comparison to say German or Russian it has very little inflection. These are the languages that we normally compare English to, and therefore we might figure that English is "nearly analytic", while objectively it's not. Well, not in my (non-expert, as I said) point of view. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 22.214.171.124 (talk) 03:20, 20 November 2012 (UTC)