Word Stem

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A Word Stem is an allomorph within a linguistic word that is derived from the Morphological Root of the associated Lexeme.



  • (Wikipedia, 2009) ⇒ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Word_stem
    • In linguistics, a stem (sometimes also theme) is the part of a word that is common to all its inflected variants. Stems are often roots, e.g. atomic, its root is atom, but its stem is atom·ic. A stem can be morphologically complex, as seen with compound words (cf. the compound nouns meat ball or bottle opener) or words with derivational morphemes (cf. the derived verbs black-en or standard-ize). Thus, the stem of the complex English noun photographer is photo·graph·er, but not photo. For another example, the root of the English verb form destabilized is stabil-, a form of stable that does not occur alone; the stem is de·stabil·ize, which includes the derivational affixes de- and -ize, but not the inflectional past tense suffix -(e)d. That is, a stem is that part of a word that inflectional affixes attach to.
  • http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/stem#Noun
    • 4. (linguistics) The main part of an uninflected word to which endings may be added to form inflections of the word.
  • http://www.sil.org/linguistics/GlossaryOfLinguisticTerms/WhatIsAStem.htm
    • A stem is the root or roots of a word, together with any derivational affixes, to which inflectional affixes are added.


    • A stem consists minimally of a root, but may be analyzable into a root plus derivational morphemes. A stem may require an inflectional operation (often involving a prefix or suffix) in order to ground it into discourse and make it a fully understandable word. If a stem does not occur by itself in a meaningful way in a language, it is referred to as a bound morpheme.
  • http://www.phon.ucl.ac.uk/home/dick/enc/morphology.htm#stem
    • A word's stem is the form that it inherits from its lexeme - i.e. everything but the affixes. E.g. in boys, the stem is boy; and in book-cases it is book-case, although this in turn may be divided into two stems.
    • In some irregular forms the stem itself is irregular; e.g. in went the stem is completely unrelated to the expected go (this is called 'suppletion'), and in sang the stem vowel is different from the expected i (vowel alternation).
  • http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/stemmer
    • (computing) (linguistics) Software used to produce the stem from the inflected form of words.
  • (WordNet, 2009) ⇒ http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=stem
    • S: (n) stripper, stemmer, sprigger (a worker who strips the stems from moistened tobacco leaves and binds the leaves together into books)
    • S: (n) stemmer (a worker who makes or applies stems for artificial flowers)
    • S: (n) stemmer, stemming algorithm (an algorithm for removing inflectional and derivational endings in order to reduce word forms to a common stem)
    • S: (n) stemmer (a miner's tamping bar for ramming packing in over a blasting charge)
    • S: (n) stemmer (a device for removing stems from fruit (as from grapes or apples))


  • (Pirkola, 2001) ⇒ Air Pirkola. (2001). "Morphological Typology of Languages for IR." In: Journal of Documentation, 57(3).
    • QUOTE: In stemming affixes are removed from word forms (Porter, 1980). The output is a common root or stem of different forms, which is not necessarily a real word.


  • (Porter, 1980) ⇒ Martin F. Porter. (1980). "An Algorithm for Suffix Stripping." In: Program, 14(3):130–137.
    • QUOTE: In any suffix stripping program for IR work, two points must be borne in mind. Firstly, the suffixes are being removed simply to improve IR performance, and not as a linguistic exercise. This means that it would not be at all obvious under what circumstances a suffix should be removed, even if we could exactly determine the suffixes of a word by automatic means.