Pluralul Substantivului

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I. INTRODUCTION

The word “noun” comes from the latin nomen meaning “name”. Word classes like nouns were first described by th Sanskrit grammarian Pānini and ancient Greeks like Dionysios Thrax, and defined in terms of their morphological properties.

Noun is a lexical category which is defined in terms of how its members combine with other grammatical kinds of expressions. Since different languages have different inventories of grammatical categories, the definition of noun will differ from language to language. In English, nouns can be defined as those morphological stems that form words which can co-occur with (in)definite articles and attributive adjectives, and function as the head of a noun phrase.

In traditional school grammars, one often encounters the definition of nouns that they are all and only those expressions that refer to a person, place, thing, event, substance, quality, or idea, etc. This is a semantic definition. It has been criticized by contemporary linguists as being quite uninformative.

Contemporary linguists generally agree that one can't define nouns in terms of what sort of object in the world they refer to or signify. Part of the problem is that the definition makes use of relatively general nouns ("thing," "phenomenon," "event") to define what nouns are.

Another problem that we encounter in studying noun in different language is the problem of loans. Loanwords are words adopted by the speakers of one language from a different language (the source language). A loanword can also be called a borrowing.

Borrowing is a consequence of cultural contact between two language communities. Borrowing of words can go in both directions between the two languages in contact, but often there is an asymmetry, such that more words go from one side to the other. The actual process of borrowing is complex and involves many usage events. Generally, some speakers of the borrowing language know the source language too, or at least enough of it to utilize the relevant words. They adopt them when speaking the borrowing language. However, in time more speakers can become familiar with a new foreign word.

English has gone through many periods in which large numbers of words from a particular language were borrowed. These periods coincide with times of major cultural contact between English speakers and those speaking other languages. The waves of borrowing during periods of especially strong cultural contacts are not sharply delimited, and can overlap.

Further on, in my study i’ll try to clarify also the problem of plural regarding to borrowed nouns.

1. The REGULAR PLURAL

There are nouns that form the plural in a regular way. These, according to their form-be it singular or plural-make the concord with the finite verb. The general rule for forming the plural number of such a noun is by adding the inflection -s to the singular form.

Examples:

boy Boys

girl Girls

cat Cats

chair Chairs

day Days

dog Dogs

house Houses

book Books

play Plays

toy Toys

In speech the regular plural has three different pronunciations(/iz/, /z/, /s/) depending on the final sound of the base.

Nouns ending in silent –e preceded by a fricative add an extra syllable in taking the -s:

bridge / bridges

corpse / corpses

box / boxes

and these will be pronounced /iz/.

Nouns ending in vowels and voiced sounds other than voiced sibilants are to be pronounced /z/:

bed / beds

hero / heroes

Nouns ending in voiceless sounds other than voiceless sibilants are to be pronounced /s/:

bet / bets

month / months

The - s suffix is written – s after most nouns including those ending in silent –e.

Adition of –es

Nouns ending in a fricative , unless written with a silent - e ( -s, -z , -x , -ch, -sh , -ss, -zz) add –es to the singular noun to build up their plurals, thus by adding a syllable:

box / boxes

tax / taxes

watch / watches.

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