Sometimes a prefix and a suffix collide to form a word. An example is malino (mal- + -ino) which is sometimes used in informal language to mean ”a man”. However, I’ve often wondered: Which ’fix gets to decide the overall meaning of the word? A few points to describe what I’m hinting at:
- malino is interpreted as ”la malo de ino” not as a female malo (which of course would be some kind of Lewis Carrol-style nonsense!) < here mal- gets the upper hand in forming the meaning…
- but what about malega – would it mean ”small” or ”very mala”?
- and what about ekseco – would it mean ”a former quality” (with the prefix as the strongest part, as in malino) or ”quality of being former” (with the suffix as the defining part?)
- and if we take a verb like ekigi, would it mean igi eka (with ek- as the stronger element) or eke igi (with an emphasis on -ig)?
I’m sure it’s possible to make a lot of more examples (praulo, boeco, geisto etc.), and maybe I’m getting a little crazy thinking about this, but I’ve really often thought about this, so hopefully there’s somebody out there who has a good answer? :-)