Human brain potentials to violations in morphologically complex Italian words

Matthias Gross, Tessa Say, Michael Kleingers, Harald Clahsen, Thomas F. Münte

58 Citations (Scopus)


Event-related brain potentials were recorded while 12 Italian-speaking subjects read correctly and incorrectly inflected verb forms. Participle forms of three types of verbs were investigated: 1st conjugation verbs (parlato 'spoken'), 3rd conjugation verbs (dormito 'slept'), and irregular 2nd conjugation verbs (preso 'taken'). We compared correct and incorrect participle forms; the latter had stem formation errors and/or incorrect participle endings. Event-related potentials (ERP) showed different responses to incorrect regular and incorrect irregular participle forms: incorrect irregulars (*prendato instead of preso) elicited a widespread negativity, whereas incorrect regulars (*parlito, *dormato) produced no effect. This difference replicates previous results on German inflection and supports the linguistic distinction between lexically-based and rule-based inflection.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2-3
Pages (from-to)83-86
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 30.01.1998

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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