Diminutive and Augmentative System in Magahi

Lata Atreya


Diminutive functions are grammatical primitives which seem to occur universally. Diminutives relate to semantic notions such as small size, affection, approximation, intensification, limitation and female gender (Jurafsky 1996). Associated with the concept of diminutives is the concept of augmentatives which is indicative of increase in degree of affection, endearment, respect, quality and sense of collectiveness. Jurafsky indicates that diminutives result due to shift in consonant, vowel or lexical tone, suffixation etc. Analogously, augmentatives are a result of compounding and reduplication. This article explores the phenomenon of diminutivization and augmentativization in Magahi. The article investigates the semantic notions associated with the phenomenon of diminutivization in Magahi and explores what are the syntactic categories that relate themselves with the phenomenon. The article also talks about pragmatics associated with the phenomenon of diminutivization and augmentativization in Magahi besides talking about various word formation processes resulting into augmentativization.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v9i4.11509

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