Word frequency distributions and lexical semantics

Baayen, R. H., & Lieber, R. (1997). Word frequency distributions and lexical semantics. Computers and the Humanities, 30, 281-291.
This paper addresses the relation between meaning, lexical productivity, and frequency of use. Using density estimation as a visualization tool, we show that differences in semantic structure can be reflected in probability density functions estimated for word frequency distributions. We call attention to an example of a bimodal density, and suggest that bimodality arises when distributions of well-entrenched lexical tems, which appear to be lognormal, are mixed with distributions of productively reated nonce formations
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