Competition in Frisian past participles

Research output: Chapter in book/volumeChapterScientificpeer-review


This paper evaluates recent developments in the inflection of Frisian past participles and how to account for them with the aid of a model of morphological productivity. In Frisian, there are two alternative types of past participles which both have their origin in the South-western dialect region of Fryslân, but of which only one is spreading productively across the whole language area. The natural existence of contact between the original dialect region and the rest of the language area, in theory enables both alternative types to spread. Also, both of them can be described with rules. We will therefore argue that the reason for the spread of only one of the alternatives is due to the productivity of its underlying rule. Specifically, we will argue that the Tolerance Principle (Yang, 2005, 2016) predicts both the difference in productivity between the two alternatives, as well as the productive spread of one of the alternatives outwards from the dialect region in which it originated.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCompetition in Inflection and Word-Formation
EditorsF. Rainer, F. Gardani, W.U. Dressler, H.C. Luschützky
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-02550-2
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-02549-6
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2019

Publication series

NameStudies in Morphology
ISSN (Print)2214-0042


  • Verbal inflection
  • Frisian
  • Language change
  • Morphology
  • Productivity
  • Tolerance Principle
  • Language contact


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