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1. Of or relating to a group of syntactically related words, none of which is functionally equivalent to the function of the whole group. For example, none of the words in the phrase on the table is an adverb, yet they combine to form a phrase having adverbial function.
2. Of or relating to a compound word whose referent is not the same as the referents of any of its constituent parts. For example, the noun razorback does not refer to a type of back, but to a type of hog (one having a sharply ridged back).


(Grammar) grammar (of a construction) not fulfilling the grammatical role of any of its constituents; as in until last Easter, where the constituents are prepositional, adjectival, and nominal, while the whole construction is adverbial. Compare endocentric


(ˌɛk soʊˈsɛn trɪk)

(of a grammatical construction or a compound) not having the same syntactic function in a sentence as any one of its constituents, as in the garden, which does not function the same way as the preposition in, the article the, or the noun garden. Compare endocentric.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.exocentric - not fulfilling the same grammatical role of any of its constituents; "when `until last Easter' serves as an adverb it is an exocentric construction"
grammar - the branch of linguistics that deals with syntax and morphology (and sometimes also deals with semantics)
endocentric - fulfilling the grammatical role of one of its constituents; "when `three blind mice' serves as a noun it is an endocentric construction"
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References in periodicals archive ?
There is no need for the traditional distinction between the two categories of semantically endocentric and exocentric compounds: all we are dealing with is a more imaginative word formation process.
Lymphoma at the ileocecal region is seen as pliable and long symmetric thickening, polypoidal lesion, or exocentric mass with no or minimal fat stranding.
A Copulative Compounds, B Determinative compounds, and C Exocentric compounds.
This study explores the performance of adults with Asperger Syndrome (SA) in three linguistic tasks that involve a pragmatic component: the comprehension of indirect speech acts, metaphors, and clauses with exocentric aspectual coercion.
The compound types include endocentric exocentric copulative postpositional and verbal compounds.
1973) Differential effects of central versus peripheral vision on egocentric and exocentric motion perception.
These schemas can combine mutually and instantiate the two major types of morphological constructions of language-generic nature advanced in this work: endocentric and exocentric constructions.
This procedure of observing artworks must somehow be built on an amalgamation in language of meaningful sounds and sound sequences, corresponding to morphemes, words, word combinations, sentences, paragraphs, and other endocentric and exocentric elements of verbal language, thus enabling their mutual transcodification into the metaphorical similarity of iconic and indexical "engineering" of artistic expressions.
Notice that the arrows in Figure 1 represent the linking meaning-form, from the exocentric morphological construction in which the relevant features are projected from the Argument and percolate to the Core (thus the categorial feature N) to the language-specific morphological template consisting of pre-nuclear and postnuclear slots that are available for lexical arguments.
P/Y shows endocentric and exocentric morphological constructions realized through different constructional schemas: continuous/discontinuous, synthetic/analytic and non-recursive/recursive.
In the case of exocentric or 'headless' constructions, however, the compound is not a hyponym of the head element.
This involves a reassessment of the use of brackets, a reconsideration of the status of the nuclear predication as well as the modification possibilities of properties, and the formalisation of exocentric in addition to endocentric layers in FDG.