Is anyone aware of any discussion in linguistics of the possibility of a "range" phrase? As I tentatively conceive of the range phrase, a true range phrase refers to a readily identifiable range, such as a range of numerical value, a range of length or distance or a range of time. Some prototypical examples of what I'm referring to include:

(1) He normally charges [between three and five] dollars. [numerical range]
(2) I normally run [10 to 15] kilometers per day. [numerical range]
(3) The night shift runs [from midnight to 8:00 a.m.] [time range]
(4) The typical adult is [6 inches to 9 inches] long. [length/distance range]

By contrast, I think the range phrase would exclude similar sounding prepositional phrase pairs that refer to two end points but don't necessarily describe a range. For example, the following would not be a range phrase:

(5) He drove from Los Angeles to New York.

  • 1
    I can kind of feel why you want to exclude (5), but am not sure how to exclude it but include (3). These two are the same, but in (3) a TIME IS SPACE metaphor is involved. In both (3) and (5), the event is true for each element of the denoted set (the night shift at each moment between 0:00 and 8:00; he drives at each point between LA and NY) On the other hand, (1,2,4) are clearly different as they denote a set from which an element must be picked (he charges only one value between $3 and $5). The habituals in (1,2,4) are not needed, e.g. he ran somewhere between 10 and 15 kilometers.
    – Keelan
    Aug 13 at 12:19
  • Zwarts (2021) has a very nice analysis of different constructions like this: between X and Y; between X and between Y; between X to Y (the last two do not work in (all varieties of) English). He does not call them a particular phrase but shows how the semantics work out even when you take three and five as the object of between in (1) (and similarly with to).
    – Keelan
    Aug 13 at 12:23


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