Part of speech whose members indicate an action or a state of being.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

1
vote
1answer
82 views

Did all regular/irregular verbs arise from the same two sources?

I'd like to confirm something that I read long ago in a since-forgotten source. I'm not sure if it was an accepted theory, fact or just a marginalized idea. But, essentially, the story goes: There ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

How should I organize my grammar?

So I'm doing a grammar for my conlang (constructed language). My conlang is a very verb-heavy/polysynthetic language. E.g. subordinate clauses are marked on the verb. To create a conditional clause ...
6
votes
3answers
225 views

The origin of the term 'verb'

References tell me that the term 'verb' originally means 'word'. This is easily understood by usages such as 'verbal abuse', 'verbal agreement', 'he's very verbal', etc. That said, of all the various ...
3
votes
1answer
189 views

V-to-I lowering and split IP hypothesis

English is I-lowering language, but on split IP hypothesis([AgrP [TP [VP]]]), verbs move to the head of TP: V-raising. /John often kissed Mary./ On unsplit IP(IP[VP]), [+tense] which the head of IP ...
2
votes
1answer
81 views

Can a control verb simultaneously be a raising verb?

For example, take believes, which is a raising to object verb. However, employing various selection tests, you can observe that believes selects an experiencer subject: #the cat believes to be out ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Why ordering is not a Part of Speech?

PoS of imagine is vv0, which means: base form of lexical verb (e.g. give, work) This means "to try to picture something in mind". It's a description of an action. However, sometimes it's used ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

What explains the differences between doublet verbs that differ by a prefix?

The differences in meanings of doublet verbs such as 3-6 below: Are there any resources that investigate the big picture behind them? I abhor to memorise, and prefer to understand, such ...
1
vote
2answers
80 views

Origins of gender distinction in verbs in Slavic

This is a thing that I have been thinking about for a while. I know that PIE did not have gender distinction in verb forms, and its presence in modern Slavic languages must be an innovation. If I am ...
4
votes
1answer
98 views

What is to verbs as pronouns are to nouns?

"Mr. Hemmingway, do you write books?" "I do." "Did Mr. Hemmingway write this book?" "He did." Just as the pronoun "he" or "I" stands in place of the noun "Mr. Hemmingway", so the verb "do" or "did" ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

If two verbs are in a row, is the first always an Auxiliary? [closed]

Consider the sentence: He has gone. This is one of the example auxiliary verb sentences from: "Radford, A. English syntax: An introduction, Cambridge University Press, 2004" has is an auxiliary ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Why does väcka/wecken seem to be built as a causative although vakna/wachen is a weak verb?

The causative verbs in germanic languages are built upon the preterite of a strong verb. However there's one verb that seems to fall out of that scheme: Swedish: vakna - väcka; German: (auf)wachen - ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

What's a good test to distinguish past participles from predicate adjectives?

Most past participles can act as predicate adjectives: "The island was inhabited." but there are some words that may look like both parts of speech, but can only be used in one way or the other: ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

Participle + indicative of the same verb (gustans gustavi, videns vidi etc.)

A couple of excerpts from the Bible (Septuagint, Nova Vulgata, Elizabeth, KJV): Acts 7:34 ἰδὼν εἰ̃δον τὴν κάκωσιν του̃ λαου̃ μου του̃ ἐν Αἰγύπτω̨ καὶ του̃ στεναγμου̃ αὐτω̃ν ἤκουσα καὶ ...
0
votes
0answers
38 views

Where can I get a good Maltese grammar book?

I am looking for a good Maltese grammar book which lists all verb forms, tenses, and declensions. Where can I find one (perhaps anywhere on the Island given that Amazon does not seem to carry such ...
1
vote
2answers
30 views

Second Person Inanimates in Swahili

I know what when making verbs about people I can use an object placeholder in order to indicate the difference between the first, second and third persons. So if I'm talking to my daughters I might ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Why do some languages partition 'to know' into 2 or more verbs?

I was reading the etymology of the Modern English verb 'know', when its reference to other languages motivated this question: [...] Once widespread in Germanic, this form is now retained only in ...
0
votes
3answers
104 views

How does the prefix 'ad-' function in 'attribute'?

attribute (v.) [<--] late 14c., "assign, bestow," from Latin attributus, past participle of attribuere "assign to, add, bestow;" figuratively "to attribute, ascribe, impute," from ad- ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Is there any verb net project in Japanese?

I'm looking for a verb network or verb dictionary project in Japanese which shows verbs with its own dependencies (like [iku DP DP] [kaeru DP] etc.). Is there any?
3
votes
1answer
94 views

What prevents verbs from taking more than a two or three complements/arguments?

So I'm writing a term paper for my introductory syntax class on Larson's and Jackendoff's theories of the structure of double object verbs. Jackendoff argues for a more linear, tertiary branching ...
2
votes
0answers
69 views

the distinction between inchoatives and unaccusatives

I'm having difficulty understanding what are inchoative verbs and how they are different from unaccusative verbs. Is it generally the case that inchoatives are subsumed under unaccusatives? Verbs of ...
1
vote
1answer
84 views

Semantic roles in the sentence with ´have´

I would like to ask for help with the clarification of some semantic roles. I am not sure what semantic role may be assigned to SUBJECT in the sentences with ´to have´ I need to assign role in the ...
1
vote
2answers
106 views

How is the dative case for help being used here?

Swiss-German has dative and accusative case-marking for its objects. In the sentence "I gave him the book," "him" must be marked as dative and "the book" must be marked as accusative. It's clear that ...
5
votes
3answers
663 views

Does any linguist honestly believe that nouns and verbs are not universals?

Does any serious scholar really believe that some languages have no distinction between verbs and nouns? Wikipedia pages suggest this. I studied physics, so linguistics is not my field at all. ...
1
vote
1answer
130 views

Are there verbs in Swahili which can be both active and passive?

In English some verbs can be both active and passive, depending on the context - for example: The mother is cooking. The chicken is cooking. In the case of my mother, I am using the active ...
0
votes
1answer
43 views

Common change of conjugation of the verbs in spoken languages?

Is the natural tendency of the verbs in spoken language towards more or fewer conjugations? For example, in my language, we use conjugations related to time, person, etc. In English we have ...
7
votes
5answers
202 views

Do other languages distinguish the verbs “to drink” when talking about alcohol?

It's interesting that English uses the verb "to drink" intransitively exclusively when talking about alcohol, as in: I drink a lot. But transitively when talking about anything else, as in: ...
2
votes
1answer
140 views

Raising aspectual verb “stop”

On this webpage http://www.lel.ed.ac.uk/~gpullum/grammar/nonfiniteclauses.html prof.Geoffrey Pullum's explains basic syntactic tests used in distinguishing raised from ordinary subjects/verbs. The ...
7
votes
1answer
153 views

Why do PIE verbs have suffixes -m-, -s-, -t-, while personal pronouns have m-, t-, s-?

Usually it is assumed that in PIE the verb forms for the singular first, second, and third person are respectively -m-, -s-, -t- (cfr. Latin). The personal pronouns, instead, have the second and ...
1
vote
1answer
118 views

Are imperative verbs starting a command subordinating conjunctions?

I have come across a syntax tree with a subordinate clause phrase (as opposed to just a sentence) whose left daughter is a verb in the imperative, e.g. Wash your laundry tonight. I have read this ...
1
vote
4answers
319 views

Intransitive verbs that take Indirect objects

Can there be intransitive verbs which take an indirect object? In the sentence "It pleases me" is "me" an indirect or direct object? What languages frequently have indirect objects in a sentence ...
1
vote
1answer
84 views

Word commonly tagged as noun but use as verb

Given a sentence "Someone has to walk the shore and map the island, see what else there is". The "map" word is a verb, but it's commonly used as noun, i.e., in most of dictionaries, the first word ...
3
votes
1answer
208 views

Why are the plural and singular first person forms of the verb “go” so different in the Romance languages?

In many Romance languages, the first person plural and singular forms are completely different: French (aller): je vais, nous allons Italian (andare): io vado, noi andiamo Catalan (anar): jo vaig, ...
4
votes
1answer
261 views

Origin of Russian class 6 and class 10 verbs

In Russian, class 10 contains only a handful of verbs ending in either -олоть or -ороть. On the other hand, looking at the list in Wiktionary, class 6 contains only one verbs in -рать (орать) and ...
4
votes
2answers
109 views

Are there any languages with a plufuture for tense sequencing?

(I admit a Romance bias in asking this question, perhaps expressing what I'm looking for is quite common in other families) After answering a question recently on the Spanish SE on tense sequencing, ...
2
votes
1answer
98 views

Why is “speak” a class 4 strong verb?

I've been trying to understand the how strong verbs in Germanic languages work, and reading the Wikipedia article I understand that class 4 strong verbs originated from, in PIE, vowel + a sonorant (m, ...
1
vote
3answers
306 views

Given a verb get a noun that corresponds to subject or object

I have verbs and I would like to find their corresponding noun for either subject or object. e.g. run:subject -> runner kill:subject -> killer kill:object -> dead I also would have groups of them ...
3
votes
1answer
77 views

Verb conjugation convergence

Portuguese has a strange coincidence in the preterit perfect tense of the verbs ir (to go) and ser (to be): they are conjugated exactly equally. Portuguese — English to go | English to be Eu fui — ...
4
votes
12answers
309 views

Languages with multiple forms of the verb “to be”

Many languages have multiple forms of the verb "to be". For example, Spanish has ser and estar, while Nepali has हो and छ. Some other examples are given in this nice blog post. My question is: what ...
3
votes
2answers
829 views

English verbs - how many types/classifications?

I've been looking at English to help my teen out, readying for college. Didn't realise how little I knew. In this specific case, I'm stuck with the large number of types of verb - finite/infinite, ...
3
votes
0answers
54 views

What currency does the term “flip sense verb” have in linguistics?

In a recent comment on the question Ergative Verbs and some discussion about them, jlawler introduced a term I had not previously encountered: The rose smells good is completely different; this ...
2
votes
3answers
582 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, ...
5
votes
2answers
809 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
298 views

Why can verbal roots in PIE only contain the vowel e?

Verbal roots of PIE are generally reconstructed as (C5) (C3) C1 e C2 (C4) (C6); with certain phonetical restrictions, especially on the outmost consonants. I wonder why only "e" should be allowed as ...
1
vote
3answers
218 views

non-concatenative morphology in written arabic?

How could you explain or analyze these written Arabic from the non-concatenative morphology point of view? These verbs are derived from nouns. bakkala (to buckle) bukla (buckle) tilifu:n ...
1
vote
1answer
69 views

Looking for three-place predicates to study anaphora

I'm trying to check whether an anaphor is obviative (in Kiparsky's (2002) sense). Since my pronoun seems subject free, I need predicates with higher arity (ternary or four-place). An additional ...
2
votes
1answer
131 views

How to determine if a word is a verb besides looking in a list of verbs?

I'm building a PoS tagger and I was wondering if there is a way to determine if a word is a verb other than looking in a list of verbs. What i'm doing is marking all words as nouns, then if it ends ...
5
votes
2answers
252 views

Why are irregular verbs usually common words?

Whilst searching for the origin of irregular verbs, I came across this forum, which points out, among other things, that irregular verbs are more often than not common words. Is there a reason for ...
5
votes
5answers
579 views

Why does English have progressive aspect but German does not?

In english there are two ways to express a present action: I go I am going However, In German there is really only one way to express a present action: Ich gehe If English is a ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

ephelcystic nu of contract verbal forms in Ancient Greek

Since some verbal forms may have an ephelcystic nu (imperfect.3S : ἐπαίδευε/ἐπαίδευεν), I would like to know if [un/]contract forms too may have this ending, as if we had ἐτίμαεν instead of ἐτίμαε and ...
5
votes
3answers
213 views

Unaugmented contract imperfect in Ancient Greek?

Since unaugmented forms are ancient verbal forms (found by example in Homer), older than the augmented ones, and since vowels contraction is still a "work in progress" at homeric times and will be ...