Questions tagged [grammar]

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

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72 views

How are clauses containing adverbial clauses and free modifiers represented in syntax trees?

I know that relative clauses simply go in the noun phrase containing the noun they modify, but what about adverbial clauses and free modifiers? How do you represent a clause containing an adverbial ...
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Markers that affect intensity of the imperative mood

I'm working on a project that explores how imperative mood varies in 'intensity'. For example, one can 'soften' the tone of a directive by including the speaker in the command: "Let's go to school"...
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Pattern to Prefixes and Suffixes in English

I've come across a list of English prefixes and remember learning in school about Latin and Greek being helpful for learning words in English based on prefixes/suffixes. I'm wondering though if there ...
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79 views

Which friend did he find to study with?

The question is about what happens to phrases during the time of making them questions. We know that the following sentence is a normal English sentence which is correct grammatically. He found a ...
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26 views

What do introductory non-finite clauses modify?

The introductory non-finite clauses below (in bold) Speeding down the road, Peter ran a red light. Discouraged by his losing record, the boxer quit boxing what, if anything, do they modify? Do ...
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42 views

Connections between combinatory categorial grammars and abstract categorial grammars?

Are there connections/translation or common tools usage/adaptation between combinatory (concrete) categorial grammars (incl. Lambek calculus) and abstract categorial grammars? Can tools for one of ...
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70 views

Subjective pronouns in English copulas: gradual loss of objective case, or emphatic construction taking over?

I'm interested in the historical linguistics of constructions like "that's me" versus "this is she" when answering the phone. Searching online led to a Google Books peephole view ...
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Is there relationship (and translation) between Link Grammars and Combinatory Categorial Grammars?

Is there relationship (and translation) between Link Grammars and Combinatory Categorial Grammars? Link Grammars have very unusual parse structure - links between words, but CCGs have parse trees. ...
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153 views

Combinatory Categorial Grammar developments and lexicon for German language?

I am trying to apply Cornell Semantic Parsing framework (implementation of Combinatory Categorial Grammars CCG) to the German language. This framework takes natural language texts, learns grammar and ...
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115 views

What does it mean for a grammar to be linear?

What is the definition of a ''linear'' grammar. For instance, there is a class of grammars called ``linear indexed grammars'' which is different from plain ''indexed grammars.'' What does ''linear'' ...
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60 views

Resources to learn just grammar

I'm interested in learning about the grammar of other languages (notably German, Russian, and Arabic), but I don't really want to learn to speak them. Only their grammar, syntax, morphology, etc., to ...
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“Did” as a habitual / emphatic marker in Southern varieties of British English

I'm currently doing research on the salience of did as an emphatic marker in Southern varieties of British English as illustrated in (1). I'm comparing this with the salience of did as a habitual ...
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197 views

Is it possible to write complex sentence without subordinate (or dependent) clause? [closed]

My first language is NOT english. Currently I am preparing for IELTS exam at the moment. Today I saw a youtube video about IELTS writing task. In this video, the teacher gave an example of complex ...
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4answers
153 views

Languages that have morphological distinction between independent clauses with implicit subjects and independent clauses with explicit subjects?

Many languages permit an independent clause to lack an explicit subject (known as null-subject languages). Consider the following sentences taken from Spanish. Tú eres mi amiga. (You are my friend). [...
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48 views

Tenses/Voices that show whether something is finite or not

Are there any languages which have a tense or voice that shows whether something is finite. For this example only I will indicate in the present tense that something is finitely true by adding an &...
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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
420 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 ...
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Generalisations which a bi-gram probabilistic model might infer from a dataset

I have the following exam question for a machine translation course: From my understanding, I assume the answer is looking for incorrect English grammar which get discovered by bi-grams. So the ...
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3answers
57 views

In what sense do non-restrictive phrases limit meaning?

In what sense do non-restrictive phrases limit meaning? It's well known that non-restrictive phrases are inessential to the meaning of the sentence because they do not limit the reference of a ...
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2answers
3k views

The verb BE as function word or content word

I'm reading a book on America accent and there's a page with exercises. Exercice: Circle the function words in the following sentences: The sky is blue. ... ... The answers are provided at the end ...
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2answers
141 views

Can we predict language death just by looking at grammar?

Is it possible to predict that a language is about to die out just by looking at its structure? So without taking into account the number of native speakers it has and other external factors? If so, ...
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2answers
185 views

Has it been argued that linguistics could only have arisen after exposure to foreign languages?

Would concepts like grammar have even been understood/discussed until other languages with different grammars were encountered?
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1answer
76 views

To what extent do different languages allow different understanding of reality?

I know that some languages have more or less tenses, have a more or less complete vocabulary, and in these ways it seems they would allow a native speaker a more or less accurate understanding of ...
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3answers
348 views

Why is Spanish SVO and not VSO?

I understand that Spanish sentences have an SVO sentence structure. (S)(Yo) (V)compro (O)los zapatos. What confuses me is the fact that when the subject is a pronoun, it is omitted so often that you ...
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2answers
159 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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1answer
392 views

Grammatical case vs semantic case

I'm not sure what these terms mean. In my lecture notes I wrote that grammatical case is used to show the syntactic functions of a nominal syntagm, depending on its relation to the verb. Semantic case,...
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1answer
179 views

Is there such thing as a 'half-plural'?

If yes, does any language have this feature? By 'half-plural' I mean, somewhere between singular and plural, but not dual, trial, or quadral.
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103 views

Is wrong article use a matter of pronunciation or grammar?

I was in a discussion with someone, where they described my wrong use of an article as a "mispronunciation". I argued it was rather a matter of grammar, as I did pronounce the article correctly, but ...
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1answer
42 views

Which option should I use if I want to learn theories that will account for as much English sentence's structure as possible

Option 1: "Cambridge English Grammar Language" by Geoffrey Pullum or Option 2: a site which, i think, is based on government and binding theory: https://www.ling.upenn.edu/~beatrice/syntax-textbook/ ...
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1answer
331 views

If you can use nouns as verbs for different languages

Along the same lines of If you can use Chinese nouns as verbs, or vice versa, I am wondering if you can treat nouns as verbs or verbs as nouns in languages such as these: Inuktitut Hebrew Japanese ...
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1answer
136 views

Difference between forms of the georgian verbs with and/or without objective version vowel

I was studying the complicted verbal morphology of Georgian language, when I came across the description of versioners in Hewit's Georgian: A Structural Reference Grammar. In discussing the Objetive ...
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1answer
238 views

Lithuanian possessive perfect

Can someone explain what exactly the 'possessive perfect' is? The book I read gave the following example: Turiu atsinešęs maisto. have:PRS.1SG bring:PTCP.PST.ACT.NOM.SG....
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3answers
107 views

How to figure out how a language may force one to think [closed]

I have many times looked up on the internet, "How to think in a language," or other such pretaining terms, but that often comes up with ways to literally think in a language in terms of language ...
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4answers
232 views

All that glitters is confusing!

"All that is gold does not glitter" "Not all that is gold glitters" The first phrase appears in Lord of the Rings, modified from Shakespeare, and contextually implies that "Aragorn is vastly more ...
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4answers
154 views

Why isn't a countable noun required to have a determiner when used in the plural?

When used in the singular, a countable noun is required to have a determiner. *I bought car. But the same countable noun is not required to have any determiner when used in the plural. I bought ...
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2answers
321 views

What is the part of speech of 'modifiers to adjectives'?

This is something I was just thinking about. Adjectives in a lot of languages can also take modifiers of their own: very big, more intelligent, etc... But is there an actual word for the part of ...
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1answer
91 views

“The depressed, the stressed, the lonely, the fearful” are these appositives?

An Introductory Series of Appositive. Example:The depressed, the stressed, the lonely, the fearful— all have trouble coping with problems. My doubt is on which basis "The depressed, the stressed, the ...
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1answer
202 views

Possessive pronoun position in north germanic languages

I begin with the following translations of the sentence "This is my father": Icelandic: Þetta er faðir minn. Bokmål: Dette er faren min. Danish: Det her er min far. Swedish: Det här är min far. All ...
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3answers
112 views

Why do some scientific possessives have trailing “s” and others don't?

I debated names of scientific terms with my friend, and we both discovered that some of them have the trailing letter "s" while others don't. Here are some examples: Mobius strip, Fourier series, ...
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1answer
107 views

Do affixes and clitics belong to an own part of speech, part of sentence or another category ?

Birds, flowers, children belong to the part of speech of nouns, to fish, to pick, to play to verbs, swift, smelly, nice to adjectives those are the easy ones, what about clitics and affixes and such ...
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1answer
198 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
131 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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1answer
59 views

The semantics of grammatical transformations? [closed]

Please see the following: We start with a sentence/clause like - Mr Wilkins is the oldest person in the village. It seems like we can "transform" the clause using certain "grammatical rules": Mr ...
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1answer
93 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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1answer
76 views

What are the thematic structures of a clause?

While going through Rodny huddleston's An outline of English Grammar; I came across a concept named :Thematic structures of a clause. Its been more than a year when I first read it but have failed to ...
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3answers
165 views

In which languages could a phrase like “We went to lunch with Bob” signify an event in which exactly two people took part?

I'm sorry for the perhaps weirdly worded question, but here's my attempt to explain better what I mean: In English, if I say "We went to lunch with Bob" means that the people involved are me, Bob, ...
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1answer
128 views

Standardized and ambiguity-free language

Is there exist a language (the natural or the constructed one) with a completely standardized and ambiguity-free rules, and which is suitable for the modern use? I am wondering for a language which ...
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2answers
63 views

Can the need for ambiguity lead to merge of grammatical person, or other semantic merge?

My mother tongue doesn't distinguish 3.SG.F and 3.SG.M in speech. In some cases I feel the redundancy of it and the need for ambiguity of the grammatical person when I speak a language which ...
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1answer
51 views

Do the WALS chapters cover the core grammatical structure of Spanish?

How complete is their description for the Spanish language? Is it missing something out? Here is the description http://wals.info/languoid/lect/wals_code_spa Thank You
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1answer
123 views

Comprehensive phonological sketches post-SPE

Is anyone aware of a comprehensive phonological grammar of a language, along the lines of SPE, Sound Pattern of Russian or Chomsky's thesis on Hebrew, written in a framework that postdates SPE? I ...

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