Children, ages six through twelve, were tested to determine when they acquired certain derivational suffixes as rule governed elements of their grammars. The suffixes tested were -y and -able. "Rule governed" was defined as the ability to manipulate these suffixes on nonsense syllables. This ability appeared as late as eleven years old with -able.
Harris, Herbert R. The Acquisition of English Derivational Suffixes: A Pilot Study. University of Kansas. Linguisitcs Graduate Student Association. 1976. 1(96) : 96-114.
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