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In order to look at established or item-familiar forms, I started by constructing a database of verbs that potentially could have NHPNs. From an original database of somewhat over 3000 verbs, I eliminated those that had previously been converted from nouns or adjectives (saddle, yellow), unergative verbs (yawn, sleep, bark, mosey) because their single argument is generally agentive.
Another way to explore the forms taken by novel NHPNs would be to search for such forms in corpus data.
That said, of the 75 or so verbs I searched, I found that 44 had attested NHPNs. For each of these hits, I then checked the OED to see if the words were attested there as well, and if they were, whether they were attested with the relevant sense.
There is clearly not a single default affix or process that we fall back upon to create NHPNs.
But is there more to be said about these novel forms, beyond that we create meaning extensions from productive nominalization processes to form NHPNs when we need them?
The results of this classification for the item-familiar NHPNs are shown in (7): (118)
What I have tried to establish in this short paper is that NHPNs do exist in English, that they can be studied, albeit with some difficulty, and that they constitute what might be called a covert word formation category.
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