LINGUIST List 5.389

Mon 04 Apr 1994

Sum: Positional tendencies; voiced bilabial fricatives

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  1. Elyse Abraham, SUM: Positional tendencies for syntactic constituents
  2. Kathleen Doty, Sum: Voiced bilabial fricatives

Message 1: SUM: Positional tendencies for syntactic constituents

Date: Sat, 2 Apr 1994 11:45:02 -SUM: Positional tendencies for syntactic constituents
From: Elyse Abraham <>
Subject: SUM: Positional tendencies for syntactic constituents

Last week I posted a query on positional tendencies for syntactic
constituents. My query read as follows:

>I am looking for comprehensive data on positional tendencies for the
>various types of syntactic constituents in English -- for instance, in
>the case of adverbials, the syntactic position that each type tends to
>occur in most frequently. Ideally what I would like to find is a major
>study that establishes positional tendencies through an examination of
>frequency of occurrence in a large multi-genre corpus. This may be
>asking for the moon. However, if anyone is aware of such a comprehensive
>study, I would be very greatful indeed to hear of it.<

Was I asking for the moon? It would seem so. Nevertheless, I have been
offered, at the very least, some very interesting "meteorites" (as Halvor
Eifring so aptly termed it), all of which I appreciate.

My gratitude to everyone who responded with suggestions: John Connolly,
Sanna-Kaisa Tanskanen, Jane Edwards, Joyce Tang Boyland, Hilde Hasselgard,
Halvor Eifring, Claude Steinberg, and Stig Johansson.

In addition to their suggestions, I also received several requests for
summaries. For the benefit of everyone interested in this very fascinating
area of syntax/discourse, I have summarized the suggested sources below.

Best Regards,

Elyse K. Abraham
Dept. of Linguistics
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta

****** Summary: Positional Tendencies for Syntactic Constituents ******

*Ellegard, Alvar. 1978. The syntactic structure of English texts. A
computer-based study of four kinds of text in the Brown University Corpus.
Gothenburg Studies in English 43. (ISBN 91-7346-051-6)
*Connolly, J.H. 1991. Constituent order in functional grammar:
Synchronic and Diachronic Perspectives. Berlin: Foris.
*Jacobson, Sven. 1978. On the use, meaning, and syntax of English
preverbal adverbs. Stockholm: Almqvist & Wiksell International.
*Jacobson, Sven . 1975. Factors influencing the placement of English
adverbs in relation to auxiliaries. Stockholm: Almqvist & Wiksell
International. [see also his more recent papers on this topic]
*Johansson, Stig, and Hofland, Knut. 1989. Frequency analysis of English
vocabulary and grammar: based on the LOB corpus. Oxford [England]; New
York: Oxford University Press. (2 volumes).
*Hasselgard, Hilde. Forthcoming. "Some aspects of contrasting English and
Norwegian word order in discourse". To appear in Altenberg and Aijmer
(eds), Papers from a seminar on parellel corpora in Lund, March 1994.
*Hasselgard, Hilde. 1993a. "Sequences of time and space adverbials in
clause-initial position: A survey of ordering principles". In Julian
d'Arcy (ed), Proceedings of the Fifth Nordic Conference for English
Studies. Reykjavik: H sk"la#tg fan.
*Hasselgard, Hilde. 1993b. "Tekstlige aspekter ved plassering av tids-
og stedsadverbialer I moderne engelsk". I T. Fretheim, L.S Evensen, E.
Sivertsen (eds), Tekst I kontekst. Oslo: Novus, 80-91.
*Hasselgard, Hilde. 1993c. Where and when: Positional and functional
conventions for sequences of time and space adverbials in present-day
English. Doctoral thesis: University of Oslo.
*Hasselgard, Hilde. 1991."Sequences of temporal and spatial adverbials
in spoken English: Some pragmatic considerations". ICAME Journal No 15,
*Hasselgard, Hilde. 1992. "Sequences of spatial and temporal adverbials
in spoken and written English". In Gerhard Leitner (ed), New Directions in
English Language Corpora. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 319-328.
*Waugh, Linda. 1977. A semantic analysis of word order: Position of the
adjective in French. Leiden: E. J. Brill.
*More general suggestions:
The various grammars by the Quirk/Greenbaum/Leech/Svartvik team.
The next issue of the ICAME Journal, which will contain an article on clause
patterns (including some remarks on word order) by some people from

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Message 2: Sum: Voiced bilabial fricatives

Date: Tue, 29 Mar 1994 18:32 PSTSum: Voiced bilabial fricatives
From: Kathleen Doty <>
Subject: Sum: Voiced bilabial fricatives

My colleague and I thank all of you who kindly responded to my
request for examples of languages with voiced bilabial fricatives.
As many of you pointed out the sound is rather common both
as phoneme and allophone. The following languages were given as
examples, though the list is by no means exhaustive: Bau Fijian,
Cheremis, Dizi, Evenki, Ewe, Dutch, Ganda, German, Georgian,
modern Greek, Gondi, Hawaiian, Karuk, Kikuyu (Bantu), Kirghz,
Koya, Mixtec, Mongolian, Neo-Aramaic, Oriya, Pashto, Rotokas,
Sinhalese, Spanish, Uradhi, Venda.

For a more complete discussion with examples, the following reference
sources were suggested:
Ian Maddieson, _Patterns of Sounds_, Cambridge UP, 1984
Peter Ladefoged, _Preliminaries to Linguistic Phonetics_, Chicago
 UP, 1971 AND _A Course in Phonetics_, 3rd ed., 1993
RMW Dixon & BJ Blake, _Handbook of Australian Languages_, Australian
 National UP, 1983.

Thanks again for your help.
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