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Basic Elements Of Structure And Word Categories.

2850 words - 11 pages

HEAD the element of any construction that must be present in order for the element to occur: Noun in Noun Phrases [NP], Verb in Verb Phrases [VP], Adjective in Adjective Phrases [AP], Adverb in Adverb Phrases [AVP], Preposition in Prepositional Phrases [PP].*head can be ellipted (left out), but it's reference will normally be recoverable from context.* determine what other elements can co-occur in the phrase in terms of class, function/role and featuresSPECIFIER*Specifies the head element*"outermost" or "leftmost" structural position to which an argument or other element can be assigned*determiner in NP, subject in clause, degree words in adjective and adverb phrases function as specifiers for their respective phrase classesSUBJECT: an element of clause structure.Class: Subject is typically a Noun Phrase (NP) as in 1-3 but may also be a clause as in 4-6.Subject Predicate1. The tall man frightened them2. The children ran away3. They hid in the forest.4. What they saw frightened them.5. That he was dangerous seems unlikely.6. Whether they will accept that is another matterAgreement*In finite present tense clauses the noun will agree with the verb in person and number and will be nominative (or possessive) case: He is sick, They are sick, Ours is/are all better but not *He are sick, *Them is sick. Note that clauses as subjects act like singular nouns in that they take singular verb agreement.*Subjects in non-finite clauses are accusative (or possessive) case (where this is observable): We persuaded [them to leave]; She watched [him being silly]; Ours being first, we celebrated.OrderIn statements, the unmarked ('normal') position for subject is before all verbs. Mary is answering the question, The scientists might have been misled.1. In questions, the subject follows the first operator verb: Might the scientists have been misled?, Is Mary answering the question? What did the man who called want?2.Modern English exceptions to this order are questions where an initial WH word actually refers to the subject position as in What happened? Who called?3.In Early Modern English questions could be formed by simply moving the main verb before the subject as in Answered Mary the question?In commands, the subject is either you or an indefinite pronoun and occurs before a base form verb as in You go home, Somebody call a doctor, Nobody move. Subject is often ellipted in these kinds of (jussive) commands. In Optative commands there is no subject for the verb Let, and the subject of the lexical verb is an obligatory accusative case us, which follows the verb Let and is frequently contracted with it: Let us go, Let's go. In fiat commands, similarly let does not have a subject. The subject of the lexical verb is typically there and follows a Let as in Let there be light. Jussives and Optatives are similar in allowing a vocative element (John, you go home, John, let's go home).COMPLEMENTS: elements of phrase structure.*the 'arguments' of a predicaterequired or at...

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