(780 words)


The phonological process whereby two different segments become more similar or identical (cf. Lat. assimilare ‘to liken, be similar’).

Assimilation is the most common phonological process cross-linguistically, examples from English including ‘gimme’ for ‘give me’ or ‘impossible’ from the prefix ‘in-’ before [p]. The opposite process is dissimilation. Despite its prevalence, its causes and effects are not always easy to identify ( Miller 2010:178-181). Assimilation of consonants may be usefully categorized a…

Cite this page
Jesse Lundquist, “Assimilation”, in: Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics, Managing Editors Online Edition: First Last. Consulted online on 22 March 2018 <>
First published online: 2013

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