I am curious as to what the technical term for "de-compounding" a word is. For example, if I were to change the word "bookstore," and change it into the phrase, "store of books," what would that "process" of "de-compounding" a word be called?
- To separate into components or basic elements. (AHD)
- The study of lexical semantics looks also at:
- the classification and decomposition of lexical items. (Wikipedia)
From: Contrasting Languages: The Scope of Contrastive Linguistics
- What is even worse, there seems to be no upper limit to this number since the process of decomposition of words into components of meaning appears to have no end, and it, moreover, often leads to circularities.
I would use the word decouple:
1. Separate, disengage, or dissociate (something) from something else:
NB: Decoupling the root words of bookstore would yield book store, where book is used attributively in the noun phrase book store as apple would be used attributively in the noun phrase apple tree. is not actually doing anything to the compound word itself.