Recursive Prosodic Structure in Nez Perce Double Reduplication

Kathryn Pruitt


Full and double reduplication are found in Nez Perce (nimipuutímt), a Sahaptian language spoken in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon. Full reduplication is characteristic of many nouns and adjectives, while double reduplication occurs when fully-reduplicated forms are subject to an additional reduplicative process, a Ci- prefix indicating plural. This paper describes the quantity-sensitive primary stress pattern of fully- and doubly-reduplicated adjectives, demonstrating a systematic departure from the usual pattern of quantity-insensitive penultimate stress in Nez Perce. It then use patterns of vowel length and plural exponence to show that fully-reduplicated adjectives exhibit a bimoraic stem minimum (though fully-reduplicated nouns do not), and argues that these facts can be understood as a manifestation of a complex recursive prosodic word structure where each stem is its own prosodic word and the Ci- prefix is adjoined as an affixal clitic.


Nez Perce; Reduplication; Prosodic Structure; Recursive Prosody

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