Advanced Database Management System - Tutorials and Notes: Notes on Inflectional morphology in NLP

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Notes on Inflectional morphology in NLP

Inflectional morphology in natural language processing, define inflectional morphology


Inflectional Morphology


It is one of the ways to combine morphemes with stems. 

  • Inflectional morphology conveys grammatical information, such as number, tense, agreement or case. 
  • Due to inflectional morphological process, the meaning and categories of the new inflected words usually do not change. That is, a noun can be inflected to a noun while adding affixes, a verb can be inflected to a verb in different tense in English.

  • We would say, the root word (stem) is inflected to form other words of same meaning and category.

  • Inflection creates different forms of the same word.

  • In English, only nouns and verbs can be inflected (sometimes adjectives too). Inflectional morphemes are very less when compared with some other languages.

Example:
Category
Stem
Affixes
Inflected word
Noun
word
box
-s
-es
words
boxes
Verb
treat

-s
-ing
-ed
treats
treating
treated

In the above example, 

  • The inflectional morpheme '-s' is combined with the noun stem 'word' to create plural noun 'words'
  • The inflectional morpheme '-ing' is combined with the verb stem 'treat' to create a gerund 'treating'.

Useful External link: Essentials of Linguistics 

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