LINGUIST List 4.215

Wed 24 Mar 1993

Disc: Adjectives

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  1. David Powers, Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads
  2. Ivan A Derzhanski, Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads
  3. Geoffrey Russom, Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

Message 1: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

Date: Tue, 23 Mar 93 18:57:14 +0Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads
From: David Powers <powersinf.enst.fr>
Subject: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads


> As only a Ph.D. student, I hesitate to contribute (and please
> don't mention my name in any summary), but it seems to me that
> the nature of English "one" is more problematic than your
> characterization of "dummy noun" would imply. Greenbaum & Quirk
> call it a "pro-form" and "nominal expression". I note the following
> asymmetries between "one" and common nouns:
>
> I want one | * red one | * hat | * red hat > red
> I want * the one | the red one | the hat | the red hat > the red
> I want * a one | a red one | a hat | a red hat > ? a red

This is in interesting table, and I have annotated it with the cases for
implied noun or nominalization. The question mark means that I am not sure
that this isn't a special case in, compare (the intrinsic attributes of)

 What wine will you have with dinner, sir? A red.
* Which pen do you want to sign with, sir? A red.
 What colour would you say that is, sir? A red.

As an encouragement to an anonymous student, all researchers are students
(or should be, even if some already have Dr or Prof. in front of their names).
I'm not even a linguist!

dP
--
E-mail: powersacm.org || powersinf.enst.fr
P-mail: Dr David Powers, Visiting Professor, TEL: +33-1-45.81.80.86
 Telecom Paris (ENST), Departement Informatique FAX: +33-1-45.81.31.19
 46, rue Barrault - 75634 Paris cedex 13 SEC: +33-1-45.81.78.70
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Message 2: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

Date: Tue, 23 Mar 93 22:14:31 GMRe: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads
From: Ivan A Derzhanski <iadcogsci.edinburgh.ac.uk>
Subject: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

>Date: Tue, 23 Mar 93 13:10:10 SST
>From: David Gil <ELLGILDNUSVM.bitnet>
>
>BULGARIAN (Grace Fielder)
>
>[...] Bulgarian allows the adjective to stand alone, although in the
>meaning of The Red (One), it will have the definite article:
>Iskam krasnija (where -ija is a definite article).

(That was meant to be _Iskam chervenija_, to be sure; _krasnyj_ is `red'
in Russian -- I don't know how this word got into the Bulgarian example.)

The definite article in Bulgarian cliticises onto the first attribute
(possessive pronoun, numeral or adjective) or the noun itself,
whichever comes first, so this construction can be analysed equally
well as a noun phrase with a null head following the AP _chervenija_.
(Cf. _Iskam chervenija shal_ `I want the red scarf', with the article
in the same position.)

>The South Slavic Languages have this definite:indefinite distinction,
>which is manifested differently in the other (North) Slavic group.

Bulgarian is actually the only Slavic language (South, West or East)
which has a definite article, though in Serbo-Croatian (I'm not sure
about Slovenian) the long form of the adjective denotes definiteness.

>HUNGARIAN (Istvan Kenesei)
>
>Of course Hungarian is one of the lanuages you're looking for, cf.
>e.g.:
>
>Mari a fekete kalap-ot vette meg, Anna pedig a piros-at.
>M. the black hat-ACC bought PERF A. however the read-ACC
>'Mary bought the black hat, and Anna the red one.'

It may be worth noting that although the adjective _piros_ `red' here
bears an accusative case marker (which it wouldn't if it were followed
by a noun), the form of the case marker (_-at_ rather than _-t_)
identifies it as an adjective rather than a noun.

Ivan A Derzhanski
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Message 3: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

Date: Tue, 23 Mar 93 12:18:47 ESRe: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads
From: Geoffrey Russom <EL403015BROWNVM.brown.edu>
Subject: Re: 4.212 Sum: Adjectives as Heads

Old English was like Greek, with frequent employment of adjectives as
substantives, especially in alliterative verse (which has archaic syntax). The
advent of "one" in modern English might be due to impoverishment of INFL.

-- Rick
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