by Shreeya Singh Dhakal on Dec. 19, 2017


Figure 1: Derivations in Nepali


In linguistics, the formation of new words from free morphemes is a very common process. The process of word formation (शब्दनिर्माण / शब्दरचना) in Nepali can be divided into inflection (रुपायन) and derivation (व्युत्पादन). In this blog post, we'll briefly discuss derivation and its types in Nepali.


You can read about inflections in Nepali at:

  • Word Formation and Nominal Inflections in Nepali

  • Verbal Inflections in Nepali


  • Derivation in Nepali


    Derivation is a process of forming new words from existing roots. In contrast to inflection, which is a process of word formation that maintains the lexical category of the root, derivation can change the lexical category of the root. Derivation in Nepali is a highly productive process. It can be categorized into four types:

  • Affixation (सर्ग प्रक्रिया)

  • Compounding (समास प्रक्रिया)

  • Reduplication (द्वित्य प्रक्रिया)

  • Euphonic Combination (सन्धि प्रक्रिया)


  • Affixation is the process of word formation by attaching free morphemes - affixes - to the roots. In Nepali, there are two types of affixes: prefix (उपसर्ग) and suffix (प्रत्यय) and hence, the two type of affixation namely, prefixation and suffixation.


    # Suffixation
    
    ईख + आलु = ईखालु
    पहाड + इया = पहाडिया
    पूर्व + एली = पूर्वेली
    
    # Prefixation
    
    अधि + कृत = अधिकृत
    उप + नाम = उपनाम
    दुस् + साहस = दुस्साहस
    

    Compounding occurs when two or more words combine to form a new word. In Nepali, there are six types of compounding, all of which are listed below:

  • Determinative Compound (तत्पुरुस समास)

  • Numeral Compound (द्विगु समास)

  • Appositional Compound (कर्मधारय समास)

  • Adverbial Compound (अव्य्यीभाव समास)

  • Attributive Compound (बहुब्रीहि समास)

  • Copulative Compound (द्वन्द्व समास)


  • # Determinative Compounding
    
    कामलाई चोर = कामचोर
    जग्गाको धनी = जग्गाधनी
    भोकले मरी = भोकमरी
    रोगबाट मुक्त = रोगमुक्त
    
    # Numeral Compounding
    
    सात कोसीको समूह = सप्तकोसी
    पाँचवटा पत्रको समूह = पञ्चपात्रो
    चार खण्डको समूह = चौखण्ड
    
    # Appositional Compounding
    
    फुफू + दिदी = फुफूदिदी
    आमा + छोरी = आमाछोरी 
    प्रिय + जन = प्रियजन
    
    # Adverbial Compounding
    
    यता + उता = यताउता
    ध्यान + पूर्वक = ध्यानपूर्वक
    यस + अर्थ = यसर्थ
    
    # Attributive Compounding
    
    लामो पात भएको = लमपाते
    चारवटा मुख भएको = चौमुखी
    लाज नभएको = निर्लज्ज
    
    # Copulative Compounding
    
    चाल र चलन = चालचलन 
    तल र माथि = तलमाथि 
    धन र सम्पत्ति = धनसम्पत्ति
    
    

    In Nepali, the formation of new words can take place due to reduplication of word or part of the word. Reduplication, in Nepali, can be divided into three categories and they are:

  • Total Reduplication (पूर्ण द्वित्व)

  • Partial Reduplication (आंशिक द्वित्व)

  • Echo Reduplication (आपरिवर्तित द्वित्व)


  • # Total Reduplication
    
    बाटो + बाटो = बाटैबाटो
    तान + तान = तानातान
    तँ + तँ = तँतँ
    
    # Partial Reduplication
    
    सम्मान + सम्मान = ससम्मान
    झगडा + झगडा = झैझगडा
    तयार + तयार = तम्तयार
    
    # Echo Reduplication
    
    तेल + तेल = तेलसेल
    खटन + खटन = खटनपटन
    घर + घर = घरसर
    

    Euphonic Combination is the joining of two phonemes from two different words to derive a single word. In Nepali, we can find two different categories of the euphonic combination. The first category contains all the types of euphonic combination taken from Sanskrit (तत्सम सन्धि) as Nepali is one of the languages which is derived from Sanskrit. The other category contains the types of euphonic combination specific to Nepali language (तत्भव सन्धि).


    # Sanskrit Euphonic Combination
    
    उप + अध्यक्ष = उपाध्यक्ष
    महा + इन्द्र = महेन्द्र
    अधि + आत्मा = अध्यात्म
    
    # Nepali Euphonic Combination
    
    मोटा + आइ = मोटाइ 
    जाउ + अत = जावत
    राती + ओली = रत्यौली
    


    Tags: Nepali Grammar