(redirected from Clitics)


An unstressed word, typically a function word, that is incapable of standing on its own and attaches in pronunciation to a stressed word, with which it forms a single accentual unit. Examples of clitics are the pronoun 'em in I see 'em and the definite article in French l'arme, "the arm."
Of or relating to a clitic or clisis.

[Greek klitikos, leaning, from klīnein, to lean; see klei- in Indo-European roots.]

clit′i·cize (-sĭz′) v.
clit′i·ci·za′tion (-sĭ-zā′shən) n.


(Linguistics) (of a word) incapable of being stressed, usually pronounced as if part of the word that follows or precedes it: for example, in French, me, te, and le are clitic pronouns. See also proclitic, enclitic
(Linguistics) a clitic word
[C20: back formation from enclitic and proclitic]


(ˈklɪt ɪk)
adj., n.
enclitic or proclitic.
[1945–50; by extraction]
References in periodicals archive ?
An Arabic word may be composed of a stem plus affixes (to refer to tense, gender, and/or number) and clitics (that include some prepositions, conjunctions, determiners, and pronouns).
It is more complicated to determine the quantity of the monosyllabic clitics.
These clitics should either be treated as the same morpheme (as suggested by the gloss), with an account of their distribution, or treated as two distinct morphemes with overlapping meaning, but distinguished in the gloss.
The syntax of quantified phrases and quantitative clitics.
The clitics ci and vi are both locatives, but the author provides corpus data to demonstrate the marginal status of the latter.
nouns, verbs and adjectives, become minor grammatical categories such as adverbs, prepositions or auxiliaries, which in turn are further grammaticalized into affixes, clitics and even inflectional markers (McMahon 1994: 160).
Clitics, Stress, and Verbal Inflection in Modern Aramaic Dialects.
Something may be marked as object by case morphemes, clitics, postpositions, word order or some formative of topicalisation.
Secondo Maiden (170), il quale riprende Rohlfs, si tratta di una forma di probabile origine gallo-romanza anziche italo-romanza: "Its exotic origins are reflected in its still imperfect integration into the clitic system: unlike other clitics it is bisyllabic.
They cover interface effects in Serbian clitics, testing conditions on meaning transfer, tracking the preference for bound-variable dependencies in ambiguous ellipses and only-structures, most meanings are superlative, grammatical illusions and selective fallibility in real-time language of comprehension, seeing what you mean mostly, and the representational nature of representational noun phrases.
See Boskovic (2001) and Panagiotidis (2002) as examples of studies approaching clitics from a minimalist perspective.
ahdm: Surely one of the most urgent investigations that needs to be carried out in Rigvedic studies relates to the syntax of pronominal clitics sitting in second position in the clause.