Orthographic cues to word stress in German
Word endings and number of final consonant letters
This paper reports a corpus study that addresses the question whether distributional patterns of certain letter strings are orthographic cues to stress in German word reading. For that purpose, the occurrence of stress patterns with a different number of final consonant letters as well as with specific word endings in disyllabic German noun lemmas were investigated. The findings indicate that distributional properties of word endings can serve as reliable orthographic cues to word stress in disyllabic nouns — irrespective of whether they are polymorphemic or simplex nouns. Likewise, the number of final consonant letters is a potential orthographic cue to word stress in disyllabic simplex nouns. Such orthographic cues to stress may be employed during phonological recoding of written words by skilled readers of German.