Questions tagged [nouns]

A category of word which typically denotes an entity of some kind.

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10
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0answers
128 views

Are nouns ever a closed class?

For pretty much any grammatical category, I can think of a language in which it's a closed class. Japanese has closed classes of verbs and (verb-like) adjectives, for example, while Swahili has a ...
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1answer
68 views

Does Swahili have relational nouns?

I've just come across the concept of relational nouns, and I'm curious if Swahili's position-indicating words count. In Swahili, there's a possessive particle -a that joins nouns together. For ...
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1answer
147 views

Does each verb have a corresponding noun with the same meaning

I believe that each main verb has (at least) one corresponding noun with the same meaning that is formed from gerund and derivation. For examples, discovery is from discover; reading is from read; ...
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1answer
69 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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73 views

Name for adjectives modifying the verb within a noun rather than the noun itself (as in “illegal immigrant”)

I'm interested in the phenomenon where people object to "illegal" as though it is inaccurate because the person implied by "immigrant" cannot be illegal in merely being a person. While moral and legal ...
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1answer
219 views

Which came first in Greek: λήθη, or Λήθη the proper noun?

i.e. λήθη: a noun meaning oblivion or concealment, and Λήθη: a proper noun referring to a river in Greek myth. My question is this: is this noun a reference to the mythological river, or was the name ...
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1answer
183 views

Is concrete noun member of abstract noun [closed]

I think normally concrete noun is member of abstract noun (membership in set theory), but it is not always true. For example, "Socrates" is a person, but it is not member of mankind (abstract noun). "...
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1answer
71 views

Terminology for chained, nested adjective anatomy

For the moment I am just considering adjectives and adverbs as the same sort of thing, basically modifiers for the noun or verb. I will probably only focus on nouns here for simplicity. Some examples ...
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2answers
78 views

Why some verbs have -tion while others don't, when being nounified

Verbs like animate become a noun animation, and others like graduate become graduation. But then there are verbs that are just straight converted into nouns, like capture the verb and a capture the ...
3
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1answer
210 views

Is there a linguistic notion of a “static” vs “dynamic” noun?

I would have typed a clearer question in the title, but it would have been way too long. By "static," I mean a word or phrase that refers to one object, and one object only. ex. The Eiffel Tower The ...
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1answer
43 views

Infinitive clauses referring to an adjective before a noun [closed]

We know that infinitive clauses can sometimes refer to adjectives before nouns. I feel with what adjectives they can do that, but I don't have any reason for it. Examples; You can buy the best ...
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26 views

Formal semantics (Montague, type-theoretical) of noun clauses

Partee has nice summary about the formal semantics of relative clause http://people.umass.edu/partee/MGU_2005/MGU05Lec10.pdf (subordinate adjectival clause). E.g. At least one boy who Mary loves is ...
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2answers
122 views

Is there a language that has temporal noun modifiers?

I am not a linguist, so my question is most probably very poorly worded. I have obviously searched on google, but to no avail. Is there a language that has noun declensions or suffixes/affixes that ...
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2answers
135 views

Do all languages use Proper Nouns?

I'm currently building an alien language that I'm trying not to base on English or basically Europe in general, because that's what cool these days, right? Anyway, what I think proper nouns are is a ...
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1answer
91 views

What is the exact meaning of 'common' in 'common noun'?

The adjective 'common' has two basic meanings according to Oxford: Occurring, found, or done often; prevalent: ‘common misspellings’ Shared by, coming from, or done by two or more people, ...
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1answer
72 views

Is there a term for an adjective or noun becoming a verb, like “to adult”?

Is there a term for a word that is traditionally an adjective or noun becoming a verb over time? A word I'm thinking of is "adult", which Merriam-Webster has reported has become increasingly used as a ...
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1answer
127 views

A subset of concrete nouns

As far as I know, common nouns include all the nouns except for proper nouns. Specifically, common nouns include abstract nouns as well as concrete nouns, which include material nouns and collective ...
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2answers
116 views

What do you call what a noun phrase refers to?

In most dictionaries and grammars, 'noun phrase' is defined by the function it performs, i.e., a subject, an object or a predicative complement. But this definition is not quite helpful considering ...
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128 views

Tests for determining NP status

What are the tests for determining whether a noun is part of a full NP or if it is simply a noun? I'm aware of tests for nounhood generally (plural, formation of an NP with a or the, modification by ...
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64 views

How do I decline a noun phrase?

First, let me say that I'm bad at grammar. Everything I know about grammar I've learned because I want to make my own languages. Second, I've created an ergative-absolutive language (I'm learning as ...
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2answers
102 views

Is there a technical term for the phenomenon of two usual nouns A and B such that the concatenation A B denotes neither an A nor a B?

Question. (The title hopefully states the abstract question in full.) Additional question: do you know more examples, possibly even clearer examples than "electron cloud" below. Remarks. An example ...
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3answers
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Are there languages without words for “father” or “mother” but only “parent”?

I'd like to know if there are languages where there aren't words for father and mother, but for parent, and how one would say [something like] this to their father in that language: where's mom? I ...
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1answer
93 views

How to know whether a word is context appropriate? [closed]

So as we all know in both Englisch und Deutsch there are many nouns/verbs that either mean the same or close to the same as eachother, but are chosen based on the context (ex: damp, moist, soggy, etc.....
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2answers
185 views

Why is there no Ancient Greek noun whose stem ends in an “i”-ending diphthong (like “-ai”)?

Ancient Greek nouns are cassified into three declensions, and we can say that this is largely based on the ending of the stem of the noun. If a noun's stem ends in -ā (or -ē in Attic when not after r, ...
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4answers
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Is a language possible without verbs or without nouns?

Is a language without nouns possible? And another one without verbs? And other ones without adjectives or adverbs? Is there some real examples? (In preference: non-constructed languages, because ...
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2answers
104 views

Term for -ed as an adjectival suffix?

By which I mean changing a noun into an adjective by adding '-ed'. For example: the noun 'horn' becomes the adjective 'horned' Is there a term for the type of adjective that is formed from a noun by ...
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1answer
94 views

Do other languages than English have verbals ,too?

As I understand it, verbals are nouns,adjectives and adverbs which are derived from verbs. I don't understand if a verbal is indeed one of the three parts of speeches mentioned or a part of speech of ...
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114 views

Reciprocal Pronouns (one another, each other) and Head Noun

I have a question about Reciprocal Pronouns (a part of the category anaphors). I can't seem to find the entire answer that I am looking for anywhere, so I'll ask here. I have tried to make my question ...
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1answer
145 views

Find head noun, “he himself”

I have run into a problem when I am trying to find the head noun for a NP in this sentence. I haven't been able to find any rules explaining why one of them would be head, or if they even belong in ...
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2answers
139 views

When analyzing a set of corpora, are there any standard practices with regard to the classification of gerunds?

In the article, "How Many Words Do You Need to Know in Spanish (or any other foreign language)? And WHICH Words Should You Be Learning?" I came upon the following: “Assume that a language learner ...
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2answers
82 views

Term for nouns strung together by conjunctions

In the sentence: Men, women and children are people. What is the term for the combination of nouns and conjunctions found in the subject position? "Compound noun" doesn't quite seem to fit the ...
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1answer
289 views

What is the “headedness” of Germanic noun phrases?

Some casual reading of the literature shows that noun phrases in languages such as Afrikaans, English, Swedish, German etc. are more head-final than head-initial. While it is easy to show that non of ...
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1answer
167 views

Languages with a grammatical distinction between abstract and concrete nouns

Are there any languages making a grammatical distinction between abstract and concrete nouns? I suppose this should boil down to the question about the existence of languages having a morpheme ...
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2answers
281 views

Are there any languages with minimal distinctions between the noun and verb categories?

Are there any languages in which the, largely Indo-European/PIE, and more compartmentalized parts-of-speech system don't work very well? In particular, I am wondering if there are any languages in ...
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0answers
45 views

collection of derivative nouns

I am a researcher in Computational Linguistics. Recently, my research interests led me towards the analysis derivative nouns, specifically nouns derived from other nouns. For example, India to Indian, ...
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1answer
250 views

Does capitalizing nouns improve readability?

In German, one capitalizes the nouns in a sentence. In the video Life in Germany - Ep. 42: English vs. German, an American claims that capitalizing the nouns makes it easier to understand a sentence. ...
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1answer
165 views

Is the word the name of a person or an adjective? [closed]

I don't know hebrew and I was reading a transliteration of the following phrase, "חכו ממתקים וכלו מחמדים זה דודי וזה רעי בנות ירושלם׃" Is the word "מחמדים" referring to a person name or an adjective ...
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1answer
256 views

Nouns without an article as in e.g. “Empire is not always a good thing”

Consider the highlighted nouns below. Empire is not always a good thing. (The burden of empire, like its benefit, was not equitably shared.) Some great apes have theory of mind. (Theory may ...
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2answers
230 views

Declension of the word “water” (maim) in Hebrew? [closed]

What is the conjugated (that is used in smikhut) form of the word "maim" (water)? Is it "maim" or "mai"? (I'm asking about ancient biblical Hebrew, but I am almost sure it is the same as in modern ...
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3answers
368 views

Who was the first to call noun classes “genders”?

I'm not asking about the origin of grammatical gender. I am asking where is the earliest example of the term "gender" used to describe classes of nouns. I'm wondering who first decided to name ...
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0answers
56 views

Finding the corresponding noun given an adjective

I am developing a Question and Answer system in the Dutch language. In order to get an answer from the system I send a query to DBPedia which either returns me answer or does not. Sentences like: "...
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3answers
471 views

Why do languages have gendered nouns?

Why do languages have gendered nouns? What are the problems that are solved by having gendered nouns?
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1answer
113 views

Can we form a statement in english with verb without noun

I am working on NLP project, I saw during processing of large number of documents that there is always a noun either before or after a verb and both are strongly related. I just need to verify my ...
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2answers
51 views

Can a personal adjective be categorized as a noun phrase?

In 'File Change Semantics and the Familiarity Theory of Definiteness' by Irene Heim, she calls 'its' in 'Every cat ate its food' a type of definite NP. Could a possessive adjective be classified as a ...
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1answer
66 views

noun phrase types

What are (1) [NP e], (2) control PRO; pro, other instances, and (3) 'e' in the examples? ('NP' here is actually a subscript in the paper) I'm reading Barbara Abott's 'Definiteness and Indefiniteness.'...
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1answer
187 views

How can case systems emerge diachronically?

This questions applies only to the languages which originally did not feature noun case systems and developed it over time through various sound, morphological and syntactical changes. By a case ...
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4answers
298 views

Are there languages that form noun singulars by adding suffixes to plurals, rather than vice versa?

In languages that express grammatical number in nouns with suffixes, usually there is either a suffix added to an unsuffixed singular to form the plural (cat—cats), or the suffix (or inflectional ...
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0answers
57 views

What electronic resources are available that categorize nouns by countability?

Most electronic dictionaries I've found only categorize words into noun / verb / adjective / adverb / etc. (such as WordNet). They don't further refine parts of speech into subcategories like count/...
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96 views

Proper vs. common nouns: Are there more differences, esp. in grammar, than capital letter and simpler plural?

Proper nouns in English have a capital starting letter and the plural is simpler (e.g. -y ending gets -ys instead of -ies). Are there any other differences? Especially when analysing/parsing the ...
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2answers
350 views

Has grammatical gender ever been observed to emerge in a language that previously had none?

Does a language exist whose older forms are known to have lacked the category of grammatical gender, and which proceeded to evolve one (perhaps from a non-gender-based system of noun classes)? Are "...