LINGUIST List 11.1214

Tue May 30 2000

Qs: Icelandic verbs, Absolute size, Teaching method

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  1. Dieter Wunderlich, Variation of Icelandic <acc gen> verbs
  2. Michael Gasser, Absolute size distinctions
  3. guili sun, Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) method

Message 1: Variation of Icelandic <acc gen> verbs

Date: Tue, 30 May 2000 16:07:14 +0200
From: Dieter Wunderlich <>
Subject: Variation of Icelandic <acc gen> verbs

Variation of Icelandic <acc gen> verbs

It has often been mentioned in the literature that Icelandic <acc acc>
verbs (with both subject and object in the accusative, such as bresta
'lack' and vanta 'lack') show synchronic as well as diachronic variation
between up to four different case patterns: <acc acc>, <acc nom>, <dat
acc>, and <dat nom>. (Smith 1994, NLLT, Yip at al. 1987, Language) 

Considering the mechanism behind this variation, I came to expect that
there might also exist another variation in which <acc gen> verbs such as
idhra 'repent' are involved (accusative subject and genitive object).
More specifically, I expect some variation between the following transitive
case patterns in Icelandic: <acc gen>, <dat gen>, <acc nom>, and <dat nom>.
However, I could not found any mention of such a variation in the

I would be grateful if readers of the list could let me know:
a) if there is any literature on this topic,
b) if they are <acc gen> verbs that alternate between two, three, or four
of the above-mentioned case patterns.

I will post a summary of responses if appropriate.

Prof. Dr. Dieter Wunderlich	
Seminar fuer Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft
Heinrich-Heine-Universitaet Duesseldorf
D-40225 Duesseldorf

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Message 2: Absolute size distinctions

Date: Tue, 30 May 2000 10:09:10 -0500
From: Michael Gasser <>
Subject: Absolute size distinctions

Does anyone know of a language that makes grammatical (or even
lexical) distinctions based on absolute, rather than relative, size,
for example, holdable-in-a-hand, holdable-in-arms, non-carryable,

It seems like the kind of thing that might happen in Mayan languages
like Tzotzil and Tzeltal.

Mike Gasser
Indiana University
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Message 3: Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) method

Date: Tue, 30 May 2000 09:17:43 PDT
From: guili sun <>
Subject: Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) method


My name is Guili Sun. I am doing a project on English teaching methodology 
in China. My focus is on Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) method. If 
you have taught English in China in the past ten years and, more 
importantly, you are interested in this topic, would you please contact me 
at I need your participation in answering a 
questionnaire. A copy of my finding will be sent to anyone who is 
interested. Appreciate your help very much.

Guili Sun
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