Relating Word Length to Morphemic Structure: A Morphologically Motivated Class of Discrete Probability Distributions

Peter Meyer
1999 Journal of Quantitative Linguistics  
In this article an alternative way of accounting for the distribution of Word length -as measured in terms of number of syllables per Word -in texts of certain natural languages will be explored. A Standard synergetic account of word length distribution has been developed and investigated in depth by Altmann, Köhler, Wimmer and others (cf. Wimmer et al., 1994). In this approach, certain mathematical relationships between, for example, neighbouring word length classes are assumed to hold. For
more » ... tance, in a simple case, the probability Px assigned to the class with x-syllabic words is taken to be proportional to the probability I\: ] of the preceding word length class: where the proportionality factor is assumed to be a function g(x) of word length x: Px = g^P x-1-
doi:10.1076/jqul. fatcat:fhdwfjubgnclbplcctzxa6ok4i