A body of rules, features, or generalizations which reliably differentiate between grammatical and ungrammatical constructions.

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54 views

Who and whom confusion for this sentence? [closed]

This question arose when I wrote this sentence - John was crying for who/whom he lost. Now while writing I got confused whether to use "whom" or "who". I know there is no problem if we use ...
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2answers
44 views

Latin nouns derived from pluperfect verbs

I am trying to understand the logic of Latin nouns derived from pluperfect verbs. For example, we have facta, things done, and scripta, things written, but I thought the pluperfect gerundive would be ...
1
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1answer
70 views

Subject/Complement Agreement. How to describe problem with “The thing is the objects.”

In http://ell.stackexchange.com/questions/29140/is-or-are-the-only-thing-that-i-want-you-to-hit-right-now-is-are-the-books/29170#29170, I provided the following, problematic, wording (especially bold ...
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0answers
67 views

In the Minimalist Program, can valued uninterpretable features still act as goals before they are deleted?

the title pretty much says it, if deletion happens with shipping to the interfaces SEM/PHON, can a valued, uninterpretable feature still be a goal for another probe of this feature? In a DP, maybe as ...
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1answer
167 views

Ergative Verbs and some discussion about them

I know what ergative verb is - Consider the following sentences - I opened the door. The door was opened (by me). The door opened. The verb open is a transitive verb in sentence #1, ...
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2answers
125 views

“Those who” vs “Them who”

I have asked this question in ELL site, but as I haven't received any answer from grammatical point of view, I am asking the same question here. Please help. I pity those who lost their money in ...
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1answer
104 views

Is there any phrase where common syntax fails?

Are there any phrases were a conventional grammar gives multiple syntactic analysis for the same phrase (without changing the meaning) or even fails to give a consistent structure? I thought about ...
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0answers
34 views

Are the phrases “both in water and land” and “for the loss and damage to” grammatical? [closed]

A. Consider the phrase that is boldfaced in sentence (1): (1) "It can live both in water and land." Is the phrase grammatical as it is, with no preposition before "land"? Or should the phrase ...
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1answer
56 views

Phrases and clauses used as an adverb, and hence don't take a preposition

He had been in precarious situations his entire life. I know here in this sentence his entire life is used as an adverbial phrase and, hence there was no need of placing a preposition before that ...
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1answer
49 views

What's the technical term for illocative parenthesis?

I want to know whether there is a technical term, preferably an accepted one, for the following type of parenthesis (bold): (1) You are, I believe, not healthy. The (bold) parenthesis always ...
4
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2answers
305 views

need to understand infinitive

What is the easiest way to understand what an infinitive is? How do I know which verb in which sentence is an infinitive? For example, let us take this website: Infinitive This is the example I am ...
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3answers
185 views

Relationship between possession (“to have”) and tenses (“I have seen”)

In several Indo-European languages the verb that denotes possession (to have) is also used to construct verb tenses. Some examples: I have seen ... I have a dog. (English) Am văzut ... Am un ...
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1answer
187 views

Why is it correct to say “Honey, I'm home”, but “Miel, soy casa” is not?

Inspired by the picture below (thanks to brainlesstaless), when I got home I called to my wife: "Miel, soy casa". After a short pause, she started laughing. I know in Spanish this sentence makes no ...
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1answer
76 views

what would be the hypothetic result of *βεβλεπνται in Ancient Greek?

I'm talking about the third plural form of medium/passive perfect, in Ancient Greek. My grammar explains that some very simple verb like παιδεύω may be inflected that way : 1S πεπαίδευ-μαι > ...
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2answers
115 views

Is a sentence's deep structure representative of i-language?

That is to say, is the deep structure supposed to be what's happening in our head when we speak a language? Or is this just to make our model of a grammar consistent?
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3answers
91 views

can the latin word -que coordinate two propositions?

I read in Ovid, Metamorphoses, I.474-477 (Apollo is in love with Daphne) : Protinus alter amat, fugit altera nomen amantis silvarum tenebris captivarumque ferarum exuviis gaudens innuptaeque aemula ...
2
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1answer
88 views

Grammar framework features that are not supported cross-linguistically

There are quite a lot of grammar frameworks postulated since the last century, like MP, LFG, RRG, RCG, MTT to name a few. I like reading about languages, but a lot of publications about languages are ...
2
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1answer
117 views

Help with syntax trees [closed]

I am having trouble creating a syntax tree for the following sentence: Ginny thinks Harry is dreamy. "Harry is dreamy" is clearly a sentence. However, I am confused what "is" should be. I think it ...
9
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4answers
509 views

What is minimalist about the minimalist program?

The minimalist program seems to be very fashionable amongst linguists at present, but for the life of me I can't understand its appeal. As far as I can see - and I've read my fair share of the ...
0
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1answer
64 views

vowel contraction after “προ-” preverb in Ancient Greek

Like περι-, προ- preverb keeps its final vowel when added to a radical as in "προ-αιρέω". But my French->Ancient Greek dictionary, the old Bailly, tells me that προβάλλω becomes either προέβαλον ...
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3answers
111 views

Sentence well-formedness

When compressing a source sentence by removing some of its words, what are the main component besides the verb, subject and negation that one has to keep in order to preserve the grammaticality of a ...
3
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1answer
132 views

What is the relation between formal grammar and generative grammar?

I am having trouble figuring out the relation between formal grammar and generative grammar. Is one a superclass of another, are they distinct, or are they identical? So far I've checked my notes, ...
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2answers
101 views

Is the set of lexical rules, or phrase structure rules finite?

I'm trying to write a program that generates valid English sentences, but without specifying what structure the sentence takes. I want that to be determined by starting at a simple sentence S (NP ...
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1answer
176 views

English vs. Esperanto (in grammar, vocabulary, semantics)

I know Esperanto is constructed on the basis of Romance languages; but what are the main differences and similarities between English and Esperanto? Especially from the following aspects: grammar ...
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2answers
80 views

Are there a finite number of noun phrase rules for nlp?

For example, a noun phrase might break up into these ways: You should eat [noun phrase] You should eat fish You should eat the fish You should eat the fresh fish You should eat NP(N) You should eat ...
2
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1answer
87 views

Dependency Grammar constraints

I study dependency grammar, DG and I have a question regarding constraints of DG. I do understand why do we need constituency grammars, CG and DG, however I don't completely understand the ...
3
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1answer
216 views

Grammar for language L = {ww ∣ w ∈ {a,b,c} * }

I am new to linguistics and trying to understand how to construct a grammar. I am however having issues on this. L= {ww ∣ w ∈ {a,b,c} ∗ } is a linear indexed language, how can I construct the ...
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1answer
71 views

What are other 'tacit perfectiveness/imperfectiveness event markers' in Russian? [closed]

I have discovered that making a communicative wishing constructions (like in 'have a good trip' or 'merry Christmas') in Russian, they use different structures depending on ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Root reduplication to mean singular

In different languages reduplication of the root serves as a means to express plurality (Malay 'orang' - 'a person', 'orang-orang' - 'people') or a greater degree (Russian 'много' - 'many, much', ...
3
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1answer
373 views

What is the difference between “Topic” and “Focus”

What is the difference between grammatical categories "Topic" and "Focus"? They are both optional, and they succeed "Force" and they both seem to stress a part of text. Rizzi places them in the ...
2
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1answer
92 views

Scrambling in Languages like Latin

Consider a clause in Latin that has n words. Latin frequently uses scrambling, so there are n! possible ways to arrange that clause given a free word order. However, Latin writers use only a small ...
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0answers
79 views

What accounts for grammatical gender classifications?

Has there been any account given for what causes grammatical gender classifications to be used in languages? Is there a purpose in associating a gender to a word? Does this type of classification ...
4
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1answer
107 views

No more than - comparing two clause

I came across with sentence today: Even she, who believed herself to be a revolutionary, could no more have broken her marital bangles than she could have driven a stake through her husband's ...
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49 views

“Such” as a pronoun and “Reduction Transformations”

I just ran into this in the novel "Pride and Prejudice" -"Ah! you do not know what I suffer." -"But I hope you will get over it, and live to see many young men of four thousand a year come into ...
2
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1answer
130 views

Does Euro-English exist?

There is debate on the existence of this variety within the expanding circle, I think it exists in as much as we can categorise other varieties (i.e. Singlish falls under the 'Asian-English' label). ...
2
votes
1answer
151 views

Why are phrase structure rules always inconsistent?

I've noticed that phrase structure rules have been very inconsistent over my studies. I've seen NP = (det)(adj)N ; NP = (det)N(PP); these definitions seem to change with context. Is it just because ...
1
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1answer
456 views

English Phrase Structure Rules and adjectives

I am learning about English grammar, but as a programmer, I have natually gravitated towards learning about syntactic structure. I am learning from university lecture notes which I found through ...
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2answers
102 views

What are the other types of grammatical numbers different from those determined by 'quantity of items'?

Different languages have different grammatical numbers. For most IE languages, these are Singular, Plural and, sometimes, Dual. Other languages have grammatical numbers differentiated by the quantity ...
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0answers
75 views

Gender/tone sandhi in [classical] Tibetan grammar?

Tibetan alphabet is a kind of abugida where glyphs may combine into new different forms, taking different positions in their combinations according to their types (see H.B. Hannah, pp. 16- 45). Each ...
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0answers
64 views

Are there grammars for subset of English?

I'm looking for grammar for relatively simple subset of English, tokens in which contain only letters, digits and comma. No quotes, colons, dashes and so on. Is there such thing? If no, is there other ...
2
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1answer
1k views

Help with syntax trees for sentences [closed]

I am trying to understand syntax trees for sentences, i have been working through linguistics by myself and am having trouble understanding the structure of syntax trees (English is my second ...
4
votes
2answers
265 views

Expressing Context Free Grammar from academic article with Python's NLTK

Please forgive the potentially noob question, but I'm trying to get started with semantic text analysis, particularly in the legal space. I found a very good paper which describes a context free ...
4
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1answer
89 views

Conditional participles

Does any language besides Esperanto have conditional participles? Esperanto has these only "unofficially"; they're not considered correct Esperanto usage by authorities, but common sense will tell ...
5
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2answers
90 views

How are foreign terms incorporated into the Arabic system of vowel alternation?

I don't know much at all about the specifics of Arabic grammar, so this question might not make sense, but as I understand it, most Arabic words consist of a three-consonant root with vowels inserted ...
2
votes
2answers
99 views

What are the main criteria for a grammar mistake to become a new normative?

I am conducting a small research on the usage of dual in the Czech language. Normally, the dual is used only when referring to body parts (legs, eyes, knees etc) and the number 200. However, in spoken ...
3
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1answer
84 views

Do we know of any influences on Tibetan from Chinese (other than lexical borrowing)?

With China asserting its influence on Tibet, including the standard Chinese language, what changes if any have taken place in the Tibetan language due to influence from the Chinese language? ...
2
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2answers
110 views

What are the various rules to deal with “markedness” if the speaker doesn't know?

I mean obligatorily marking a word for number, gender, animacy, direction etc, I don't actually know what I'm asking about. For example, in English, we have that awkward situation where we don't know ...
3
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1answer
150 views

Resources comparing grammars of different languages

I'm looking for a book on comparative grammar, where the grammar of different languages and/or language families is described and compared. EDIT: A comment made me realize that the question is ...
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0answers
131 views

When are numbers nouns?

In my native language, Portuguese, numbers have officially been in various classes, from adjectives and nouns to "quantifiers" and determiners. I'm thinking that perhaps we can't group them all, ...
2
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2answers
283 views

Hebrew - Arabic grammar book

I've been searching for quite a long time for a Hebrew-Arabic grammar book to study both languages in more depth at the same time while being able to compare similar roots and the root system for ...