What is a 'bound' morpheme?

 

 

 

WHAT ARE MORPHEMES?

Morphemes are two things (known as 'classes')  in the world of literacy. 

Morphemes can be 1. root words or 'bases' and 2. affixes. 

 

WHAT IS A ROOT WORD?

Let's start with what a root word is. It is the basic word or root of a verb where you can add prefixes and suffixes to. Prefixes and suffixes are collectively known as affixes

A root word can also be a word in its own right. These are known as 'free morphemes'

Examples of a root word which are words in their own right are: script, form and love. 

1. manuscript.

2. formal

3. loveable

 WHAT ARE BOUND MORPHEMES?

So how do bound morphemes relate to the classical definition of morphemes? Unlike root words such as 'script' or 'form', bound morphemes cannot stand alone as a word in its own right. Affixes are examples of bound morphemes:

1. pre-

2.  de-

3. re- 

4. -ing

5. -ful

A bound morpheme is a morpheme that can only be used when attached to another morpheme.

It differs from derivational morphemes as when these morphemes added to other morphemes they create new words such as kind + ness becomes kindness