Clipped forms in English

Published: 15-04-2021| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/2rw5vtz3xh.1
Hideo Kobayashi


The raw data presented are compiled into smaller groups depending on the number of syllables of the source words. The truncated item appears in the round bracket, as exemplified in sergeant (sarge) and body (bod) among many others. There is no monosyllabic word in English, which radically reduces. Therefore, the disyllabics are the smallest number of syllables contained in the English word which are subject to word shortening. The total of 750 original words are analyzed into 235 disyllabics, 273 tri-syllabics, 150 quad-syllabics, 70 penta-syllabics, 20 hexa-syllabics and 2 hepta-syllabics. Additionally, 39 source words with varied clipped forms are included in the corpus. The sources are Macquarie Dictionary (1984), Minkova (2018), Quirk et al. (1985), Thorndike and Barnhart (1997), Random House Webster’s College Dictionary (2001), and Collins Online Dictionary (2020). Since as of today there is no data of English truncated items freely available, the way in which the data was collected has some value on its own merit. When the lexical entry of one shortened form was printed in a written text, the form was added to the list of truncated words; nearly every page of the text sources has been investigated.