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The study of the internal structure of expressions, especially between words and phrases, and the principles and processes that determine it. This includes words order, but also the grammatical relations that hold between words, as well as structural ambiguity, binding, reference, and similar issues....

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1answer
88 views

What is the syntax of “second” in phrases like “the second most common problem”?

In English, words like "second", "third" etc. (also "next", I guess) can be used with a superlative to count down from the maximum. Some dictionaries call "second" an adverb in this context (e.g. MW, ...
2
votes
2answers
60 views

Syntactic and semantic ambiguity

Does syntactic (structural) ambiguity always come with semantic ambiguity, or is semantic ambiguity always due to syntactic ambiguity? Or are both statements correct?
0
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0answers
29 views

Definiteness and specificity [closed]

I need a help from a native speakers of English language. How would You say the following sentences? Is it correct a) or b) and then c) or d)? (Pay attention to the article the/a.) a) I'm looking ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

How can you know that a word in a sentence is a verb?

I am wondering what it takes to parse a sentence with incomplete knowledge. That is, take a sentence like this: If I use timeout I have to call again my function at the end of the execution of the ...
1
vote
0answers
13 views

How to differentiate between adjuncts and complements? Specifically when the sentence has two prepositional phrases [duplicate]

When a sentence has 2 prepositional phrases, how I can determine whether the second prepositional phrase is a complement of the first prepositional phrase or it's an adjunct to the whole sentence? ...
0
votes
1answer
61 views

How common is it for languages to be head-first as often as they are head-final?

English, I've heard, is rather odd for not leaning one way or another towards a head-final order, or a head first. Verbs gravitate towards the beginning of sentences and it uses prepositions, which ...
1
vote
2answers
201 views

Does syntactic stress exist?

From what I know, stress can only be assigned at the level of the word (as in English) or the level of the sentence (as in French). Can any natural language assign it syntactically, e.g., "the first ...
1
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2answers
60 views

“In his desk(,) he kept a black book.” Is “in his desk” a preposed complement here?

The answers and comments beneath my question about the sentence “He kept a black book in his desk” seemed to agree that “in his desk” acts as a complement and not as an adjunct in that sentence. But ...
2
votes
0answers
42 views

Difference between tense & Grammatical aspect?

I know this question has been posed before, and I know also that there were different versions of putting it depending on models and different kinds of reasoning. What I want to understand, is the ...
0
votes
0answers
52 views

Are there languages which have ways to distinguish between an adjunct noun and an adjective?

(Take some example). Do other languages (than English) have means distinguish between their adjunct nouns and adjectives or is it a very complex/grammatical structure that cannot possibly be ...
0
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0answers
22 views

Prepositional Phrases

Can you please tell me what's the difference between an inflectional phrase and a tense phrase? In a related venue, in a PP is the NP sister to the P' or daughter to it? Thanks
1
vote
1answer
72 views

Is there any theoretical explanation of putting infinitive clause at the beginning?

There is a sentence which my Canadian professor today talked about. 1-) I see no reason to do these stupid things. The Canadian English professor at the university said that we could put the part "...
0
votes
1answer
28 views

Syntax- X-bar theory- verbal Domain [closed]

Please can someone explain to me what a 'parallel pattern in the verbal domain of French' mean.
3
votes
1answer
72 views

“He kept a black book in his desk.” Is “in his desk” an adjunct or a complement?

The verb "keep" can be used with a direct object and a prepositional phrase, as in the following sentence: He kept a black book in his desk. What is the grammatical role of the PP "in his desk"? ...
1
vote
2answers
45 views

What are the best books to study generative syntax?

I'm looking for a good book to study generative syntax from an introductory level to intermediate or advanced.
2
votes
1answer
50 views

Are non-restrictive relative clauses adjuncts or modifiers?

In Leo Messi, who lives next door, is the greatest football/soccer player in the world. is "who lives next door" an adjunct or a modifier? My thinking goes like this. If I isolate the non-...
5
votes
0answers
34 views

Languages with nominalized verbs that specify the thematic relation of its possessor

In English, nominalized verbs have only one form regardless of the thematic relation of its possessor: The robot's destruction (of the city) terrified authorities. The robot's destruction (by the ...
5
votes
6answers
314 views

Are English modal verbs tensed or non-tensed?

My assumption: English modal verbs are non-tensed (i.e. we don't say shoulds or shoulded). Yet, in X' bar theory, modal verbs appear under the inflection node I', precisely where we find the ...
1
vote
0answers
73 views

Which other languages have discontinuous dependencies and how are cross or long ones managed in them?

Discontinuous dependencies are a part of English syntatic rules and also are something which linguists are still trying to deal with. My question: which other languages have this problem and how does ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

difference between c-command and dominance

In this definition Node A c-commands node B if: a) A =/= B b) A does not dominate B and B does not dominate A c) every X that dominates A also dominates B I understand the bigger picture, but my ...
2
votes
0answers
51 views

Linear order preserving syntactic trees

Two questions: Is the syntactic tree notation supposed to be Linear order preserving in general Linear order preserving for English Generally linear order preserving for English None of the above ...
4
votes
1answer
100 views

Imperative + pronoun

English and German have vestiges of an imperative followed by a subject pronoun: → Be Thou My Vision (archaic) → Don't you talk back to me! (colloquial) → Bitte rufen Sie ihn. (polite 2nd ...
1
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0answers
43 views

English verbs requiring PP

Are there a set of English verbs that require a prepositional phrase? For example: "The set consists of A and B." = GOOD "The set consists" = BAD Is there a name for this type of verb? They seem to ...
3
votes
0answers
69 views

Are there any languages that have words for open and closing quotation marks in speech?

It seems to me that most languages have some way of bounding quotations in written form. European languages have their apostrophe quotes and angle-brackets, while eastern Asian languages have those ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Search tool question

The World Wide Web provides access to an extremely rich collection of written texts and transcriptions of dialogue from both current and historical sources. But I often have trouble searching for ...
-1
votes
1answer
148 views

Please explain the following contrast in grammaticality in syntax [closed]

*Mary to be accepted at Boston College would be great. For Mary to be accepted at Boston College would be great
4
votes
1answer
205 views

Is the lowercase first letter of a proper noun common in the Swazi language?

Swaziland has been renamed to Kingdom of eSwatini, it is Swazi meaning "place of the Swazi". But I'm pretty interested in the lowercase "e" starting the proper noun of eSwatini. I know in the west we ...
0
votes
1answer
54 views

“in relation to which” - what type of subordinated clause and is this conjunction somehow distinct?

I am trying to analyse the sentence: Building land is a plot of land in relation to which a construction permit has been issued. and my question is - what type of subordinated clause is introduced ...
3
votes
4answers
129 views

Syntax Explanation? [closed]

I am a new ESL teacher, and I would like some help to understand my student's error so I can better explain WHY it needs to be changed. I can't figure out the "rule" as to why it needs to change. ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

What does the number of slots in a VP depend on?

If I get it right, VP-shell hypothesis argues in favor of three slots at the most. What exactly restricts the arity?
2
votes
0answers
102 views

Meaning of “Prejacent”?

I have seen the word "prejacent" in many linguistics related papers. However, none of them explains what exactly a prejacent is. Could someone elaborate more on this?
1
vote
2answers
115 views

Suffix -ed indicating current state

I'm noticing that some English verbs use the -ed suffix to indicate the current state. Using this example: https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/base Specifically, the verb sense, ‘the film ...
4
votes
1answer
89 views

Linking surface and deep structure

The sentences in (1) contain the same words, but differ in word order. Nevertheless, the sentences have very similar, if not identical, meanings. (1a) I am home today. (1b) Today, I am home. ...
1
vote
0answers
24 views

How are nominal predicates expressed in active-stative languages?

Based on my reading, Active–Stative languages typically feature the core arguments of Agent (AGN) and Patient (PAT). While the precise rules differ by language, it seems to be that for intransitive ...
6
votes
3answers
171 views

What constitutes a Long Distance Dependency, and how can it be quantified?

To come to a computational and statistical analysis of some machine translated texts, a colleague of mine wants to quantify Long Distance Dependencies. The problem is, that we cannot seem to find ...
0
votes
1answer
124 views

What is the difference between syntax and grammar? [duplicate]

I think syntax is concerning with the theories of syntax like structuralism, behaviorism, traditional, and informational since each school has it's own rules and theories while Grammar is in regard to ...
4
votes
1answer
140 views

Do different alignments restrict what kind of word order a language can have?

I've read somewhere that all known ergative languages are either verb-initial, or verb-final. I find this surprising, but I don't know of any counter-examples. I've seen plenty of nominative ...
2
votes
5answers
158 views

How do languages with case deal with 'sentential arguments'?

I'm not 100% sure of the proper terminology here, so I'm just using the one used in the LCK. What I mean by a sentential argument is an argument that is a sentence rather than a noun phrase. Case in ...
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0answers
35 views

Translation of 'verbes symétriques' from French to English

What do you think is the accurate equivalent les verbes symétriques in English?
0
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0answers
23 views

What are the best explanations for d-structure and s-structure in sentences?

What are the best explanations to present the ideas of d-structure and s-structure in sentences?
4
votes
0answers
75 views

Are there any languages where the first person cannot be an object?

In some languages, nouns low on the animacy hierarchy, particularly inanimates cannot surface as A, and if a situation arises where they are underlyingly A, some reparative strategy such as a passive ...
3
votes
1answer
86 views

Why is there no D-structure or S-structure within Minimalism

Government and Binding introduces D-structure and S-structure as two distinct levels of representation, however, this changed within the Minimalist Program. Could someone explain or point me in the ...
4
votes
1answer
136 views

What grammatical features do SOV languages often share?

I've read that languages with the same word order often have similarities, even if they're not related, purely because some grammatical features will force a language to use others. For instance, if a ...
3
votes
0answers
38 views

Is there a phrasal verb corpus somewhere online?

I'm working on a project where I have syntactic frames in the form of something like "N.agent V PP.stimulus", where each PP consists of a P and a N. I have a set list of verbs, and a list of PPs for ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

A sort/type/kind of N. Which is the head?

Let's take the example 'A kiwi is [a type of bird]'. Page 109 of this book https://faculty.mu.edu.sa/public/uploads/1367260110.5528Understanding%20Syntax.pdf sais that the head of a phrase: A. Has ...
3
votes
2answers
76 views

Is there such a thing as a “floating preposition”?

Floating quantifiers are quantifiers that can move away from the corresponding noun, such as "each" in "The boys hit each other" where it modifies "The boys". I am interested in prepositions in these ...
2
votes
0answers
36 views

What could be the opposite of a 'Topicalized language'?

There're languages with topicalization system like Philippines, English, etc. I was wondering since the counterpart of 'Ergative' is 'Accusative', what could be the counterpart of a 'topicalized ...
3
votes
3answers
207 views

Principle of Compositionality: Free Word Order Languages?

Can anyone explain what additional claims can be made for the Principle of Compositionality in regards to a language like Basque? I understand that Basque is a "free word order" language and the ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Syntax tree help? [closed]

I have one sentence that is an optional practice question for my syntax class that I just cannot figure out. It's ambiguous as far as where the PP falls but I hope someone can help anyways by giving ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

Doubly Filled COMP in Contemporary English

Are there any cases of doubly filled COMP in contemporary English? Middle English had relative clauses with wh-phrases and complementisers co-occurring. I’ve also read that the variety of English ...