Questions tagged [word-classes]

a set of words that display the same formal (linguistic) properties, especially their inflections and distribution.

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What's the global difference between nouns and verbs?

Is there a way to distinguish nouns and verbs that applies to all languages? This problem has been occupying my mind for some time now. I'm not quite sure how to approach this question, so I'll just ...
Joe's user avatar
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32 votes
5 answers

What languages lack personal pronouns, and why?

The Japanese language lacks personal pronouns in the IE sense. Japanese is very pro-drop, and often sentences will be constructed so personal pronouns do not appear, and the agents which the pronouns ...
dainichi's user avatar
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21 votes
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Does Japanese have pronouns?

It is often said that Japanese doesn't really have a pronoun word class, such as in the Wikipedia article on Japanese Grammar: Although many grammars and textbooks mention pronouns (代名詞 daimeishi), ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
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14 votes
5 answers

What parts of speech / word classes do languages most frequently lack?

Among conlangers, AllNoun is a notable syntax because it only makes use one part of speech / word class, which is analagous to nouns. A natural language I've heard of (but I can't remember or find a ...
Peter Olson's user avatar
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17 votes
3 answers

Are word classes universal?

I'm working on an application that takes a special database of words and its word class and determines the such from a given sentence. I'm now working to see if word classes that are found in English ...
jackyalcine's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers

Are there some analyses or linguists with the view that Chinese does not have lexical word class?

I'm not a linguist but a language enthusiast and I read lots of stuff about all languages mostly on the internet in blogs but also in accessible books and sometimes attempt to read some things not ...
hippietrail's user avatar
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7 votes
2 answers

Is the word "here" a preposition?

In a related question, I got entangled in a debate whether the word "here" (which I would classify readily as an adverb) is in reality a preposition. I am curious which modern analyses find ...
Eleshar's user avatar
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5 votes
4 answers

What's the difference between 'parts of speech' and 'syntactic categories'?

As far as I can tell, the only difference between these two ways of describing classes of words is that 'syntactic categories' actually relies on evidence of use for determining categories, while '...
LaurenG's user avatar
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5 votes
2 answers

Languages with different open and closed word classes

The prototypical example of languages with unusual open and closed categories, which is mentioned almost every time that the topic comes up, is Japanese, where pronouns are an open category and verbs ...
Circeus's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers

Is Conversion syntactic or morphological?

Conversion, such as: permit (verb): I permit you to do so permit (noun): Take this permit Can be considered to be a morphological (i.e. lexical) process. But there are arguments for it being a ...
Danger Fourpence's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers

always | never | "all the time" - what kind of words are these?

always never "all the time" They aren't 'expletives', but they express a non-expiry. What word would describe this type of word? Context : he never brings me flowers; he's always late; you criticise ...
OzBob's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers

Are sentences the only constituents that "sentence adverbs" modify?

For those who came in late, a "sentence adverb" is a word that modifies an entire sentence rather than just the verb or predicate. A sentence adverb communicates speaker attitudes about the ...
James Grossmann's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers

English co-compounds? Is bittersweet a co-compound?

I'm looking for English or other standard European language co-compounds, and for other common examples. I came across "bittersweet" but I'm not sure if it's really a co-compound. It has a ...
patrick's user avatar
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