What Are Word Forms?

Words forms are the different ways a word can exist in the context of a language. Many words exist as nouns, verbs or adjectives and change when prefixes or suffixes are added.

Understanding word forms is necessary in order to comprehend and communicate in a given language. Words forms alter the meaning and tense of root words. For example, the words beautify, beautiful and beautifully are the verb, adjective and adverb forms of the noun beauty, but they are not interchangeable when used in a sentence. Contextual clues are needed when determining which word form to use in cases of verb tense, such as jump or jumping and learn or learned.