In pronounced contrast to English, Italian orthography contains extremely regular sound-to-spelling correspondences and therefore Italian words could, in principle, be spelled perfectly correctly using nonlexical phoneme-to-grapheme conversion rules alone. If this were so, then there should be no lexical influence upon nonword spelling. However, the present experiment reports lexical priming effects for two inconsistently spelled segments in Italian words: Italian participants were more likely to spell the nonword ‘tece’ as TECIE if they had just heard the word ‘specie’ rather than ‘pece’ and were more likely to spell the nonword ‘cuodo’ as QUODO if they had heard the word ‘quota’ rather than ‘cuoco’. These results suggest that Italian, despite its regular orthography, is not spelled purely nonlexically. It is argued that a dual-route model of spelling production can be applied to Italian.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 29, 2004
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