Zur Spezifik der adjektivischen Neologismen. Einige Bemerkungen anhand des ‘Wortwarte’-Korpus
The Specificity of Adjectival Neologisms. Some Remarks on the Basis of the ‘Wortwarte’ Corpus
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The present paper is devoted to the specificity of adjectival neologisms on the basis of observations made while analyzing the ‘Wortwarte’ electronic corpus, whose author is doctor Lothar Lemnitzer from Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences. This lexical corpus is updated on a nearly daily basis and provides a source of valuable information concerning German lexis for people learning the language as well as for linguists. It also encourages the researchers to pay more attention to new lexemes and to describe them. The adjectival neologisms listed in ‘Wortwarte’ are certainly worth attention. The empirical material for the paper, which comprises adjectival neologisms that were listed in 2012 and in January 2013, was subjected to both quantitative and qualitative analysis. The main conclusions are as follows: adjectival neologisms constitute 6% of the neologisms listed in ‘Wortwarte’ and in terms of quantity they prevail over verbal neologisms, although they are significantly fewer in comparison with nominal neologisms. However, it should be emphasized that the number of emerging adjectival neologisms in relation to neologisms derived from different parts of speech proves that the adjective enjoys a firm, stable status both among the lexemes existing in the German language and those emerging on a day-to-day basis. As far as the structure of adjectival neologisms is concerned, of particular importance is the fact that most of them are two- or multi-word compounds (in 2012 – 95%, in January 2013– 90% of all neologisms under analysis) which demonstrate a distinct tendency to form word series, e.g.: airbagfrei, ambientefrei, couchfrei, exzellenzfrei, fracfrei, gagfrei. Another interesting issue concerns the spelling of adjectival neologisms. More specifically, these neologisms reflect the overall tendency in the contemporary German language to opt for hyphenation. What this paper underlines is that the graphic-optical breaking of individual parts of a compound, by means of a hyphen, serves variouspurposes. The results of the analysis are presented using diagrams, which helped to order the data gathered, to visualize them and facilitate their interpretation.
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