Plotholders: Don’t Lose Your Plot!—Coherent and Cohesive Gardening Narration—Claymore Harebottom SpecGram Vol CXC, No 2 Contents Linguistic Squirminology: Coming to Terms with Linguistics Terms—Lynn K. Wystick & Lexi K. O’Graffie

In Defence of the Lexome

Ἀλέξια Ἀγνωσῐ́ᾱ, Лекс Циркумф, Լեքս Ռեֆ, & Lex Retrof
X. Quizzit Korps Center for Advanced Collaborative Studies

The objective and abjective failure of the “morphome” and the general lack of uptake of other -omes has led many modern pundits to denounce and decry all such concepts as “worthless” (Beaughuss, 1994), “barren” (Sterrill, 2003), “futile” (Veign, 2011), “unproductive” (Yuce-Lesce, 2017), and “meaningless” (Abbzerde, 2020). While most -omes do indeed deserve such scorn, the lexome does not. Noble, fruitful, and moral, the lexome rises above its weaker sistren and deserves a more respected place in contemporary linguistics.

Older studies viewed the lexome in friendlier terms, especially the rather colourful work of Wood & Spuin (1956). Of course, all such literature has long since been confined to locked shelves of obscure libraries in remote, rainy locations, due mostly to the possibility of embarrassment to emeritus English Linguistics faculty, who would never again look at a wooden spoon the same way.


While we sought to examine this effect among subjects identified, come who may, in southern France, we had the misfortune of going up against four anthropology projects by former advisees of the members of the funding committee and were given the choice of Papua New Guinea or Papu’s New Guinea Fowl Farm in central Kentucky, whose glories and treasures all of us had fully glutted ourselves on in field trips in 5th grade. Thus, after a 104-hour flight involving transfers at 18 airports that left us actually regretting transferring from Air China to [NAME REDACTED FOR LEGAL REASONS], we* undertook an unsuccessful search for wheeled transportation to the study site. Thus, after parachuting out of an airplane that had seen better centuries, we proceeded to enlist informants.

During the process of setting up our research base in Papua New Guinea to house our pool of proto-Klingon speakers, we accidentally discovered that wugswhich can be difficult to catch and are illegal to exporthave a taste for fresh gaghand vice versa!—leading to a somewhat circuitous wug-acquisition process: a stunt kite–cum”fishing” pole baited with gagh was piloted by its owner from the crown of the tallest tree in the vicinity, luring the generally less agile wugs to fly headlong into the trunk of a nearby target tree, where they would fall earthward into the waiting arms and/or sacks of the otherwise useless undergraduate interns we were forced to bring with us on the trip. While wugs are generally found in pairs, their shy nature makes it difficult to assemble larger numbers of them, thus necessitating this apparently bizarre procedure.

After the wugs were herded, using the method above, the experimental stage began with the selection of proto-Klingon speakers who were not likely to kill us. Five test subjects were selected randomly from the total candidate population of 4 that we had previously identified. Three of these were native speakers of proto-Klingon, and the other two (including the one we counted twice) were as well.

All three proto-Klingon native-speakers were presented with the lexomic roots in sets A (polymorphemic deverbal agentive nominals) and the bare roots in Set B (words for cutlery) and were asked to select where clitics 1–3 could attach.

Set A
quʼDelghIʼ (“destroyer”)
ghentalghIʼ (“manipulator”)
ʼaDorabʼelghIʼ (“skull-crusher”)
qutʼInSweʼetlhghIʼ (“honor-restorer”)
qutʼInquʼDelghIʼ (“honor-destroyer”)
Set B
wImpeyʼ (“knife”)
meeq (“fork”)
punʼeyʼ (“spoon”)
Dumdum (“spork”)
ʼughleyʼ (“marrow scoop”)


After the re-examination of the utterances of native speakers, it was realised that their intuitions were garbage, allowing us to present the most important results of our complex method below.

Wugs (of)Highish
Wugs (by)Ditto
Emeritus English linguistic facultyQuite High

As the table shows, wug utterance rate (both of and by wugs) was higher than predicated at “Highish” while emeritus English linguistic faculty utterance rate was in line with predictions (margin of error equal to or less than 34 Pearson-O’Gradies) at Quite High. These results may be interpreted as lending additional weak support to the lexomic formation hypothesis.

Researchers attempting to replicate these conclusions are urged to work quickly if feeding live gagh to wugs, as this turns out to be strongly detrimental to the longevity of the latter (though a cost-effective way to multiply the former).

Summary and Conclusions

As well as the aforementioned results on the utterances of wugs and emeritus English linguistics faculty, this paper also critically examined a new hypothesis on the formation of lexomic clitics by native speakers of proto-Klingon. Unfortunately, the cliticisation hypothesis failed due to the indeterminacy of speaker intuitions with respect to the polymorphemic deverbal agentive nominals in Set A.

Further work will be needed to understand the process of lexomic formation under typical constraints.

* Excluding the members left at the airport to take receipt of our luggage, which took another 472 hours.

Plotholders: Don’t Lose Your Plot!Coherent and Cohesive Gardening NarrationClaymore Harebottom
Linguistic Squirminology: Coming to Terms with Linguistics TermsLynn K. Wystick & Lexi K. O’Graffie
SpecGram Vol CXC, No 2 Contents