from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. See paramorph.
  • n. Any of the variant forms of a morpheme. For example, the phonetic (s) of cats (kăts), (z) of pigs (pĭgz), and (ĭz) horses (hôrˈsĭz) are allomorphs of the English plural morpheme.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of the different crystalline forms of a substance.
  • n. Any of the different phonological representations of a morpheme.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any one of two or more distinct crystalline forms of the same substance; or the substance having such forms; -- .
  • n. A variety of pseudomorph which has undergone partial or complete change or substitution of material; -- thus limonite is frequently an allomorph after pyrite.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In mineralogy, a paramorph, that is, a pseudomorph formed by molecular change only, the chemical composition remaining the same, as calcite after aragonite.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any of several different crystalline forms of the same chemical compound
  • n. a variant phonological representation of a morpheme


allo- + morph(eme).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
allo- + -morph (Wiktionary)


  • The term allomorph is just linguistobabble for a piece of language, such as a suffix, that shows predictable variation in its form in different positions or circumstances.

    Archive 2008-05-01

  • Since -cve is locative of -cva, listing it as another allomorph is another mistake.

    Ashes to ashes

  • Ta-Den wants to get his hands on the allomorph, sure as can be.

    New Race

  • Since it isn't adequately explained under what conditions -ia is yet a fourth allomorph of the same suffix, I consider it a distinct plural marker on its own.

    Ashes to ashes

  • The terminating sequence -cv could only be the abbreviation of plural suffix -cva which is a regular allomorph of -xva when following a sibilant.

    The "Tlusc Mar" Reading Error on the Piacenza Liver

  • Next, luθcva is transparently a nomino-accusative plural because -cva pl. is an allomorph of the more typical form -χva following aspirate θ.

    The Etruscan verb root slic- in TLE 131

  • My attentive readers may have noticed that I've already asserted several times on this blog that -va a plural inanimate ending is an allomorph of -χva.

    Archive 2008-05-01

  • It turns out that there may be a case for -cva being the proper allomorph of the inanimate plural after sibilants instead of -va.

    The loss of mediofinal 'h' in Pre-Proto-Etruscan

  • The suffix -va is a known allomorph of -χva that is used after stems ending in certain consonants eg: PyrT 1.i-ii heramaśva 'idols'; see Etruscan grammar pdf by Micheal Weiss of Cornell University.

    Archive 2007-03-01

  • Now that allomorphy can be eradicated in the germ line, parents no longer pass on the allomorph trait to their offspring.

    Sagittarius Whorl

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