LINGUIST List 11.2654

Thu Dec 7 2000

Sum: Mass Nouns v. Count Nouns

Editor for this issue: Marie Klopfenstein <>


  1. Julio Viejo, Mass Nouns vs. Count nouns

Message 1: Mass Nouns vs. Count nouns

Date: Tue, 05 Dec 2000 16:54:58 +0100
From: Julio Viejo <>
Subject: Mass Nouns vs. Count nouns

Here is the summary of responses I have received to my query on mass and
count nouns in different languages of world (LinguistList 11.2465). 
They have sent me data on these languages or linguistic families:
Danish (specially Jutland dialects)
Bijogo (Western Africa)
Bantu languages of Africa in general
Russian and slavic languages

Also is known this grammatical distinction in Asturian, Italian dialects,
dialectal Spanish, English or Wintun, and as I said in my first mail, and others
(I suppose)

Bibliography received:

-Behrens, Leila. 1995."Categorizing between lexicon and grammar: The
mass/count distinction in a cross-linguistic perspective." Lexicology 1:
-Corbett, Greville G. "Number", Cambridge University Press, 
-Tai, James, and Liangqing Wang. 1990. A Semantic Study of the
Classifier tiao. Journal of the Chinese Language Teachers Association
-Beckwith, Christopher I. 1998. Noun Specification and Classification in
Uzbek. Anthropological Linguistics, Vol. 40 no. 1, 1998, 124-140.
-Beckwith, Christopher I. 1998. Toward a Comprehensive Theory of Noun
Categorization, with Special Attention to Thai. U. Warotamasikkhadit, ed.
Proceedings of the Fourth Annual Meeting of the Southeast Asian
Linguistics Society (1994). Tempe [Arizona State University], 1998, 73-82.
-Bunt, Harry (1985), Mass Terms and Model-Theoretic Semantics. Cambridge:
-David, Jean & Georges Kleiber (1989). Termes massifs et termes
comptables. Colloque International de Linguistique organis� par la
Facult� des Lettres et Sciences Humaines de Metz, Centre d'Analyse
Syntaxique (26-27 novembre 1987). (Recherches Linguistiques 13). Paris:
-Gordon, Peter (1985). "Evaluating the semantic categories hypothesis: the
case of the count/mass distinction". In: Cognition 20, 209-242. 
-Pelletier, Francis Jeffry (1979). Mass terms: some philosophical
problems. (Synthese Language Library 6). Dordrecht: D. Reidel.
-Schaefer, Melanie, "Synchrony and diachrony of the count/noncount
distinction". PhD dissertation, University of Regensburg, Germany, 1998
-Filip, Hana. 1994. Aspect and the semantics of noun phrases. En: Vet, Co &
Carl Vetters (eds.) Tense and Aspect in Discourse. Trends in Linguistics.
Studies and Monographs 75. New York: Mouton de Gruyter. pp. 227-255.
-Filip, Hana. 1993. Aspect and the semantics of quantity of verbal and
nominal expressions. En: Michael Bernstein (ed.) Proceedings of the Ninth
East Coast Conference in Linguistics. Ithaca: DMLL Publications, 80-91.
-Back, Emmon. 1986. The algebra of events. Linguistics and Philosophy
-Dowty, David. 1972. Studies in the logic of verb aspect and time reference
in English. [Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Texas at Austin.] 
-Krifka, Manfred. 1992. Thematic relations as links between nominal
and temporal constitution. En: Ivan Sag -Anna Szabolsci (eds.) Lexical
Matters (Lecture notes 24) Stanford: Center for the Study of Language and
information, 29-53.
-Mar�a Luisa Hernanz (1988). En torno a la sintaxis y a la sem�ntica de los
complementos predicativos en espa�ol. En : Estudi General, 8 (Girona) pp.
- --- (1990). Personas generales y tiempo verbal. En : Wotjak, gerd and
Alexandre Veiga (eds.) La descripci�n del verbo espa�ol. Verba, anuario
galego de filologia . Anexo 32. Universidad Santiago de Compostela.
-Demonte, Violeta. 1992. Temporal and aspectual constraints on predicative
adjective phrases. En : Campos, H. and F. mart�nez-Gil (eds.) Currents
Studies in Spanish Linguistics. Georgetown University Press.
-Zagona, Karen. 1993. Spanish adjectival secondary predicates, time adverbs
and subeevnt structure. Cuadernos de Linguistica 1:317-354. Instituto
Universitario Ortega y gasset, Madrid.

(I couldn't still read two files on dutch gender kindly sent by their
author, William Fletcher. Surely, they are also very interesting on this

Thanks to: Vanessa Scherr, Martin Haspelmath, Henrik Jorgensen, Guillaume &
Raphaelle Segerer, Greville Corbett, Elizabeth J. Pyatt, M.L. Souag,
Joaquim Brandao de Carvalho, Chris Beckwith, William H. Fletcher, Adrian
Clynes, Frank Joosten, Edgard Schneider, Sonia Maruenda & Inga Dolinina.
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