Chapter 10: Syncretism


Chapter 10 (‘Syncretism’) examines the very widespread phenomenon of syncretism:  the realization of distinct cells in a paradigm by the same word form.  In general, syncretism involves two or more content cells sharing a single form correspondent, but such instances arise in more than one way.  Natural-class syncretisms arise only because no rule of inflectional realization is sensitive to the morphosyntactic distinction between the syncretized cells; other syncretisms are directly stipulated by rules of morphology.  These stipulated syncretisms include directional syncretisms (which arise when the realization of one property set systematically patterns after that of some distinct property set) and morphomic syncretisms (which arise when two property sets that do not form a natural class are nevertheless alike in their realization and neither set is associated with that realization independently of the other set).