LINGUIST List 13.1370

Thu May 16 2002

Sum: Correction: Sensation Predicates

Editor for this issue: Marie Klopfenstein <>


  1. Daniela Caluianu, sensation predicates

Message 1: sensation predicates

Date: Thu, 16 May 2002 10:30:49 +0900
From: Daniela Caluianu <>
Subject: sensation predicates

Dear Linguist List,

My summary on sensation predicates was hardly posted and I 
have already received a number of messages from Spanish 
speaking linguists concerning the Spanish data.

The correct translation for 'I am hot' in Spanish is (1a), 
rather than (1b).
1. a. Tengo calor
 b.? Me hace calor
I apologize for the mistake. I have received two sets of 
Spanish data and in my enthusiasm for brevity I skipped 
one. Unfortunately, this was the best one.
I am very sorry and I paste below all of the 
Spanish data in my possession.

I hope my summary contains no other inaccuracies, but if 
it does, I would be grateful if you pointed them to me so 
I can make the necessary corrections.

Message 1

in Spanish there are two different predicates for these expressions.
This tea is hot = Este tqestacaliente
I am hot = Tengo calor

Message 2

In Russian, the two sentences would be handled in the following way:

This tea is hot. 
Etot chaj gorjachi. This tea hot (nominative long form adjective)

I am hot.
Mne zharko. To me (dative personal pronoun) hot (adverb). (A dative impersonal 

Also, in Spanish as in Russian, the two words that one would select for hot 
would be different:

This tea is hot.
Este te esta caliente. This tea is (temporary characteristic) hot (adjective).

I am hot.
Me hace calor. It is hot to me (the weather is acting on me and causing me to 
be hot).

If one were to say: 
Soy caliente. I am hot (sensual/attractive/turned on, use of verb denoting a 
permanent characteristic)
Estoy caliente. I am hot (sensual/attractive/turned on, use of verb denoting 
that the speaker feels that way right now)

Message 3
Spanish, French and Italian are (b) languages like Kurdish, and I am surprised that 
Romanian shows the difference by case distinction. They as you no doubt know use 
the construction "to make [noun]" for natural phenomena and "to have [noun]" for 
animate sensations:
"It is cold": hace fryP - il fait froid - fa freddo
"I am cold": tengo fryP - j'ai froid - ho freddo]


Daniela Caluianu
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