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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 ?
This cliticisation of the negator with M1 generates a change in the semantics of the clause although it is still the same E-R semantic ordering.
In order to address this issue, Chomsky assumed that following LF cliticisation of the anaphor to T ([alpha]) and feature movement of the subject to T, they find themselves in a configuration of mutual c-command, insufficient for both binding and exclusion of Principle C effects:
Traitement Informatique de la Cliticisation et de l'Accord du Participe en Prolog.