Stress assignment in words with -I suffix in Hebrew

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The purpose of this paper is to describe, analyze and explain the stress patterns of words formed with the homonymic suffix -i which conveys a variety of derivational and inflectional morphological functions in Hebrew, e.g. yaldut-i ‘childish’ (derivation) and ‘my childhood’ (inflection). The suffix -i functions in two inflectional and three derivational categories: (a) second person singular feminine in verbs (e.g. šví ‘sit down! [F.SG]’, takúmi ‘you[F.SG] will get up’); (b) first person singular in nouns, prepositions, and several other parts of speech (e.g. 'aví ‘my father’, kamóni ‘like me’); (c) adjectival formation (e.g. 'olamí ‘worldwide’, cíni ‘cynical’); (d) gentilic affiliation (e.g. germaní ‘German’, síni ‘Chinese’); (e) affectionate expression (e.g. xamúdi ‘sweetie’). Polysemy seems to occur in adjectives (c) and gentilic words (d), however, as each of the functions creates different word classes – only adjectives in (c) and both nouns and adjectives in (d), these categories will be differentiated here. The stress in words with the suffix -i is not fixed, as can be seen in the examples above. In most cases the suffix is stressed (except for (e) which is always unstressed). Penultimate stress is determined in each category by various phonological and morphological rules as well as by other non-linguistic factors which will be described and explained in this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-127
Number of pages18
JournalSKASE Journal of Theoretical Linguistics
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2018


  • Derivation
  • Homonymy
  • Inflection
  • Stress
  • Suffixes
  • Word class

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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