Questions tagged [english]

A Germanic language, which originated from England, and is considered the leading language in international communication.

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Do nouns in simple apposition semantically unpack to predicate nominatives in English?

A Koine Greek grammar states that nouns in simple apposition are semantically understood as predicate nominatives. So, "Paul the apostle" unpacks to "Paul is the apostle" and "the apostle is Paul" ...
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Semantic category of [VERB] + as a + [NOUN]

I have the following examples from a corpus (ICNALE corpus) "They can grow as a member of society." "At university, students are regarded as adults not children." "I worked in a hotel as a service ...
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119 views

Does a main verb undergo inversion in “Has he any shame?”

My undergraduate textbook builds a case to posit separate classes of verbs as lexical, auxiliary, modal in nature. One criterion is how auxiliary and modals (unlike main verbs) undergo inversion but ...
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217 views

What is the name for the tense/mood/aspect of “You will have seen the news that…”?

There are two superficially similar constructions in English, which have quite different implied meanings: You will have seen the news that the company is furloughing 15% of its employees, but I ...
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427 views

Why is there no Subject-Auxilliary inversion in Subject questions?

In questions where a wh-element refers to the object, we can observe SAI (Subject-Auxilliary inversion). [Who did [you see]]? As far as I'm aware, C-head has a [+Q] feature and it's occupied by a ...
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72 views

Is there a term for how English replaces the preposition “of” by putting the word that comes after “of” before the word that comes before “of”?

EG, Apple Juice --> (The) Juice of Apple(s) Gold Castle --> (The) Castle of Gold Liver Disease --> Disease of (the) Liver Et Al.
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50 views

Is the following sentence a CP? Does it contain another CP?

Lies, do you think that she tells you? Is this sentence grammatical? Is the whole sentence a CP, in which lies is the CP Specifier and do is the head C? If yes, is that the C head of a second CP in ...
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86 views

How is the ungrammaticality of the following sentence explained?

Maria asked I read which book This sentence is ungrammatical. Is this because an IP I read cannot be a complement or sister to a V asked Is there a CP in this ungrammatical sentence?
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Are these examples of Broken English, Pidgin English, or something else entirely?

I'm wondering if these are examples of broken English, pidgin English, or something else entirely? If they're not broken English or pidgin English, than, what are they? "very good this shiver and ...
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Why are constructions such as ‘AN historian’ commonly pronounced with a non-silent H?

It is well-known that the determiner a is substituted with an when the following word begins with a vowel (letter or sound). In some cases, however, an has been used preceding words beginning with (as ...
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grammar of the 'in the following'

Consider we have the sentence My bird likes sunflower seeds. She eats a lot of seeds everyday. Using pronoun resolution we can replace she with the actual subject 'My birds'; converting 'She ...
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The grammatical subject, the logical subject, and something new

I'm no linguist and I'm unaware of the recent development in linguistics, let alone all the past developments, but I know some of the past developments at the very least, so I'm asking this question ...
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Is there a principled reason behind differing compound verb stress in English?

Is there a principled difference between compound verbs in English with stress on the first root and those with stress on the second root? First root stress compound verbs: Dropkick Spoonfeed ...
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Why is “Shanghai” pronounced the way it is in English?

Most English-language news sources and people in America pronounce the name of the city (上海) with a long a sound as in "way" within the "shang (上)" syllable, but it's not pronounced that way in ...
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Phrase structure tree of a Wh question

The sentence would be "Whose dirty underwear is this?". I assume that the base (is that called deep structure sentence?) would be "This is whose dirty underwear" but I'm not sure what ...
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is PP ‘out’ an adjunct or a complement of V ‘get’ in ‘get out’

As the title shows, in a VP ‘get out’, is PP ‘out’ an adjunct of VP ‘get’, or a complement of V ‘get’?
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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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804 views

Irregular penultimate stress in English words from classical sources

Wikipedia says about stress in Latinate English words: In words of three or more syllables, stress falls either on the penult or the antepenult (third from the end), according to these criteria: ...
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Dataset of English verb forms (conjugation)

What are some exhaustive/accurate datasets of English verb forms? From this closed SO question, I see: http://www.ibiblio.org/webster/: GCIDE, which contains plurals, alt spellings and conjugations, ...
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My teacher wants me to disambiguate the sentence by separate tree diagrams [closed]

the sentence: The scared monster saw a very lovely dog with one eye. here is what I finished so far : to change as 1.The scared monster with only one eye saw a very lovely dog. and other one is that ...
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115 views

sentence structure vs word order difference

What is the difference between a sentence structure and a word order? (could you please explain that on a few examples?) Thank you.
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The “writer / rider” distinction

In some dialects of English (for example: General American), “writer” is said to be pronounced differently from “rider” due to the following two phonological rules (done in this order): Vowels are ...
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What is the difference between “ɪ”, “i”, “i:”? [duplicate]

What is the difference between “ɪ”, "i", “i:”? Is “ɪ” lax and short, "i" tense and short, "i:" tense and long?
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Why does English have words from Latin and none from Celtic?

It is known that Britain's history of invasion goes as: Celtic arrival, Roman domination, Saxon settlement, Nordic settlement, Norman invasion. If England's identity was largely made from the Saxons (...
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What is case for pronouns in different positions? [closed]

Can we say "the case of subject in a sentence is nominative, the direct object of a verb is accusative, the second object of a ditransitive verb is accusative, the objective of a preposition is ...
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Checking Definitions for Self-Consistency and Cycles

I am building a "self-contained" set of definitions, and would like to ensure that the definitions: Do not contain circular definitions (which might include other words within that cycle, not just a ...
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a question about reflexives and nonreflexives

Why "the house(i) had a fence around itself(i)" is ungrammatical but "Susan(i) wrapped the blanket around herself(i)" is grammatical?
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ʃɔː can you pls help me what word is this po? [closed]

/ʃɔː/ can you pls help me what word is this po?
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Binding Puzzle in English Generative Syntax!

Consider the following sentences: (1) Anna believes [ IP herself to be a hero] ] (2) Anna wants [ IP him to leave] ] (3) *Anna wants [ IP herself to leave ] ] (1) is an example of Exceptional Case ...
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Are sound changes regular?

Are sound changes regular now or not? I mean it seems to me that it's accepted that sound change is pretty regular, because of how sound changes are treated in etymology/historical linguistics. I even ...
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199 views

What is the distribution of pronominal “one”?

(Based on the comments this question has received, more is needed to avoid confusion. The original question remains as stated below the line below. What is added here now is a more complete rendition ...
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1answer
57 views

How much more often is a definite article used with a noun than an indefinite article in the English language?

I'd be happy if I could get an overall answer to this question, but if someone is also capable of breaking this down by single vs. plural nouns nouns as subject vs. nouns as direct objects nouns as ...
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How can we say modals are of category T, but auxiliaries are really verbs? [duplicate]

Are there any arguments or theories to account for it?
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What is the relation between a specifier and a determiner?

Does specifier mean "the" and "possesser" and determiner mean "the" and "possessive 's"?
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Considering the English language, is there only one way to divide a word in syllables?

I should do a words analysis. More specifically given a word I should split it into syllables and I was wondering if, given a word, there is only one syllables subdivision. This is because I have read ...
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What is the ratio of uncountable nouns to countable nouns in the English language?

I want to make the claim that uncountable nouns far outweigh countable ones in the English language, but a cursory search of the web did not lead me to anything that might support this claim, so all I ...
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Is the word “abjad” borrowed from Arabic or was it coined in English then borrowed by Arabic?

"Abjad" is a technical term for a kind of writing system which is used when contrasting them with other writing system types such as alphabets, abugidas, and syllabaries. There is also an Arabic word ...
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Raised object vs. Subordinate subject (I didn't want 'Kim' mistreating my cat)

(1) I didn't want Kim mistreating my cat. (2) I didn't want Kim to mistreat my cat. Semantically, Kim is not the object of want but the subject of the respective subordinate clauses mistreating ...
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56 views

Why do the equivalents of “moody” in other Germanic languages mean “courageous”?

If it wasn’t clear, “moody” is a word found in the English language. It generally implies a sense of melancholy on the thing it is describing. However, in other Germanic languages, the cognates of ...
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72 views

Labialised /r/ in RP

Is /r/ in RP labialised in all positions? For example: In words like real, free, proud, tree, brother, borrow, dream, throw etc. Is it labialised in all positions (like intervocalic, post-...
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American production of /ɾ/ in other languages

Why is it common for Americans who study foreign languages to keep producing /ɾ/ as a retroflex sound, even though [ɾ] is present in their pronunciation of native words like city and water?
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Name That Phenomenon: I worry that once I STOP doing an action “just to be safe,” the thing I'm being safe from will occur

I've always had feelings like these before. I've seen sad movies when I was younger, but the thing that got me the most was the kid (who lost their parents) said, "The last thing I ever said to them ...
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Errors in my linguistics textbook

There were a couple of things I learned in linguistics class that turned out to be wrong, but at the moment I only recall one: they told us that no native English speaking child would ever say "What ...
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Do the DRESS vowel (/e/) and SQUARE vowel (/ɛː/) have the same vowel quality in contemporary RP?

I understand that the SQUARE vowel is now often realized as the long monophthong /ɛː/ instead of the traditional diphthong /eə/ in contemporary RP. The DRESS vowel is now also closer to the open-mid ...
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Does English “day” really come from PIE *dʰegʷʰ- (“to burn”)?

day From Middle English day, from Old English dæġ (“day”), from Proto-Germanic *dagaz (“day”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰegʷʰ- (“to burn”). Cognate with West Frisian dei (“day”), Dutch dag (“day”)...
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Does California vowel shift occur in bilingual Spanish speakers?

I know that recently there has been a lot of research done on the California vowel shift being a key part of a California accent for younger kids who have grown up there. Knowing that there is a ...
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Does anyone know the history of the infinitive?

I teach grammar, and I think it is no mystery to anyone that infinitives are strange. I think it might help me to know the history of this verb-cum-noun-adjectiv
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Is T-Glottalization in English a modern phenomenon?

The phenomenon of T Glottalization, which is distinct from the Queen's English in that the T sound is replaced with a glottal stop, is evidenced in some of the papers of linguists working in the 1960s ...
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653 views

How did this alternation happen?

Wiktionary's entry for "seldom" contains the following etymology: From late Middle English seldom, alteration of earlier selden, from Old English seldan (“seldom”), from Proto- Germanic *...

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