New PDF release: Adjective Classes: A Cross-Linguistic Typology

By R. M. W. Dixon, Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald

The reviews during this quantity recommend that each language has an adjective category, yet those differ in personality and in measurement. In its grammatical homes, an adjective classification may well beas just like nouns, or to verbs, or to either, or to neither.ze. while in a few languages the adjective category is big and will be freely further to, in others it really is small and closed. with only a dozen or so contributors. The booklet will curiosity students and complex scholars of language typology and of the syntax and semantics of adjectives.

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Extra resources for Adjective Classes: A Cross-Linguistic Typology

Example text

However, the rules for gender agreement within an NP are different for the two word classes. Following a non-singular ist or 2nd person pronoun as head of an NP, plus a possessed noun, a further possessed noun will be in masculine form while an adjective shows feminine form—see (34-6) in Chapter 7. The gender/noun class distinction spans morphology and syntax. A similar criterion is provided by classifiers; generally, an adjective may occur with a larger set of classifiers than may a noun (potentially, an adjective may occur with all classifiers, while a noun maybe limited to one, or to just a few).

4. The adjective class I here put forward the idea that, just as all languages have distinguishable classes of noun and verb, so all languages have a distinguishable adjective class. However, the adjective class differs from noun and verb classes in varying ways in different languages, which can make it a more difficult class to recognize, and a more difficult class to put forward generalizations about. First, as mentioned above, whereas noun and verb classes are almost always large and open, the adjective class shows considerable variation in size.

In the majority linguistic usage of the term, a predicate does not include any NP (the O argument for an accusative language, or the A argument for an ergative language); it should not be taken to include a copula complement. Thus balavu 'tall' is predicate head in (4), but tall is copula complement (quite distinct from the predicate) in (3). 3. Distinguishing noun and verb In most languages it is an easy matter to distinguish noun and verb classes, in terms of syntactic function and morphological possibilities.

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