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I would like to compare different sentence structures and would like to look up sentence glosses quickly. Are there any databases out there, either for all languages or for individual languages?

In particular I am looking for Tibetan, Sanskrit, Hebrew, Chinese, Arabic, and Cree.

In searching google all I am finding are grammars which are hundreds of pages with few glosses. Is that it?

I am looking here but it's not very simple.

  • Out of curiosity, why (apart from unreliability) doesn't Google Translate do the job for you? I used it as an informant for Corsican and it wasn't a disaster. – user6726 Sep 22 '19 at 2:06
  • No google translate is very far off on a lot of languages. – Lance Pollard Sep 22 '19 at 2:21
  • Given that, why isn't GT the solution to your needs? – user6726 Sep 22 '19 at 3:38
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You should be able to use the ODIN site for this. The links to the XML data are all broken, but you can access the link to download the XML data directly from this URL, but replace the "xxx" with the 2- or 3-letter language code for the language you want (from here). :

http://odin.linguistlist.org/download/xml.php?lang=xxx

The languages you mentioned as your interests (choosing one variety from each when there are more than one) can be found at Tibetan, Sanskrit, Hebrew, Chinese (Mandarin), Arabic (Standard), and Cree (Plains).

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  • There's like 5 glosses in that tibetan link lol, I was hoping for like 1000. – Lance Pollard Sep 22 '19 at 0:48
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    @LancePollard What are you hoping to learn from a thousand sentences that you wouldn't learn more easily from a good grammar? – Draconis Sep 22 '19 at 1:08
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It's not clear what you are looking for (alternatively, your expectation is unrealistic). Drawing on the Cree example, you can locate the gloss "2-like-DIR?-N thus:CNJ-speak.Cree-3" or "1-see-INV-3" in that database. I assume you did not know that you have to enter those particular glosses (why not "see-1-3-INV"? – because the gloss reflects the morphemes of Cree, their order, and their conventional abbreviation in some cases like INV). It seems really unlikely that you would ever want to look up a gloss like "1-see-INV-3", unless you are doing a comparative study of Algonkian. You can't compare sentence structures across languages in any meaningful way, if you are searching by gloss. But if you were searching using English translations, you might have somewhat better odds of learning something. For example, you might get the equivalent of "You see me" from Cree and some other language (if it's in the database). It is not in the Tibetan data, nor the Arabic.

You might contact Giellatekno. There's a reasonable chance that they have large amounts of text, much of which may be already parsed, and a gloss plus translation is in principle available, at least for the Saami languages. You would probably have to build the database yourself, but they have good computational tools for parsing, and the main problem would be associating lexical items with something that you might use (presumably you don't want "goahti" in your gloss, you want the English equivalent).

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Not linguistics glosses, but a lot of sentences in a lot of languages can be found on Tatoeba. The sentences are typically of the phrase-book type, but there are also some more complicated sentences.

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