Morpheme, stem, root and affix

Definition of morpheme, stem, root and affix

Denote the definition of morpheme, stem, root and affix and give examples for instance.

a. Morpheme is the smallest meaningful unit in a language. A morpheme can not be divided without altering or destroying its meanings.




b. Stem (also the based form) is the part of the word which an inflectional affix can be added

Eg: In English the inflectional affix “s” can be added to the stem “work” to form the plural “works” in the “works of Ho Chi Minh president”

The stem of a word can be:

– a simple stem consisting of only one morpheme (root)

Eg: visited, boys, colder, coolest

– a root plus a derivational affix 

Eg: workers, communists

– two or more roots

Eg: workshops, classrooms, babysisters

c. Root is a morpheme which is the basic part of the word and which may occur on its own or may be joined to ather roots

Eg: work : workshop

d. Affix 

– is a letter or group of letters which is added to a word and which changes the meaning or function of the word

– affixes are bound forms that can be added: 

a. to the beginning of the word (prefix). Eg: pre-school, uncomfortable, disagree

b. to the end of the word (suffix). Eg: careful, beautiful, development

c. within a word (infix). Eg: fisherman, handicraft, sportsman

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