Underlyingly free (floating) features occur crosslinguistically. These
features sometime function as morphemes. Such features, like segmental
morphemes, often refer to specific edges of the stem, hence they are
'featural affixes.' They get associated with the base to be prosodically
licensed. We propose to account for the association of such features
through a family of alignment constraints called 'featural alignment'
which is a featural version of McCarthy & PrinceÕs Align (MCat, MCat).
Under featural alignment, an edge is defined for a feature based on a
possible licensor, which may be a root node or a mora. We argue that
misalignment takes place under pressure from feature cooccurrence
constraints. Thus a featural suffix may get realized elsewhere in the
stem, surfacing as a featural infix or even as a featural prefix. This
constraints based approach is preferred to rule based approaches since
it does not require a variety of additional assumptions needed within
rule based approaches to account for the same phenomenon. These include
structure preservation, prespecification, extratonality and filters.