Since the affixes do not have the same token frequency, to compute P for equal values of N means to perform calculations for different affixes on corpora of different size.
tot] holds for all the affixes investigated throughout the sampling process.
The same procedure may be repeated for different values of N, thus allowing us to compare productivity ratios of two affixes at different points of their curves.
However, the number of affixes included here is largely sufficient to discuss the methodological aspects of our work, which is the main focus of this article.
Within both domains, we selected a significant group among the most frequent affixes that could be segmented via a partially automatic procedure, namely:</p> <pre> (2) For the deverbal domain: a.
very long' </pre> <p>All affixes listed above are rather frequent in texts, but certainly not to the same extent: the ratio between the highest and the lowest token frequencies (those of-(z)ione and -evole respectively) is more than 50:1.
In Table 3 the affixes are ordered according to their values of P, calculated for three different values of N: 19,000, 50,000, 100,000.
Due to the sharp differences in token frequency, not all the affixes can be compared directly together: the blanks in Table 3 correspond to values of N which are too high for the least frequent affixes, with no available data.
We have now developed enough of a framework to return to the first problem raised here: what do affixes like -er and -ee mean, and why do they receive the range of overlapping interpretations that they do?
We assume, in other words, that affixes have actual semantic content.
The novel proposal we make is that the vast majority of category-changing derivational affixes in English add a function that corresponds in featural content to one of the major semantic categories of simplex lexemes, namely the categories in (16).
These are the basic categories of the simplex lexicon, and we use derivational affixes to extend these categories.
The system also suggests a kind of basic paradigmatic structure for affixal semantics, a series of classes defined for the simplex lexicon into which affixes may themselves fall.
Given the system outlined here, we propose that the affixes -er and -ee actually make exactly the same fundamental featural contribution to their bases.
That is, these two affixes fall into one of the expected basic affixal types that the system predicts, a category of affixes that corresponds to simplex items like author, chef, awl, victim, and the like.