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Peter Hugoe Matthews (born 1934) is a British linguist. He is a fellow of St John's College, Cambridge, and was formerly Professor and Head of the Department of Linguistics at the University of Cambridge (1980-2000).

Matthews is perhaps best known for his writings on linguistic morphology. He has published two monographs on the subject.

Matthews was an early follower of Noam Chomsky, but lost enthusiasm for the 'generative enterprise' during the 1960s. He has since become a trenchant critic of Chomsky.

Selected publications

  • Inflectional Morphology: A theoretical study based on aspects of Latin verb conjugation (1972)
  • Morphology: An introduction to the theory of word-structure (1974)
  • Generative Grammar and Linguistic Competence (1979)
  • Syntax (1981)
  • Grammatical Theory in the United States from Bloomfield to Chomsky (1993)
  • A Short History of Structural Linguistics (2001)
  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Linguistics (2005)
  • Syntactic Relations: A Critical Survey (2007)


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