LINGUIST List 9.484

Sun Mar 29 1998

Qs: Psycholing,Praeverbium,N. Am Dialects,Plurality

Editor for this issue: Martin Jacobsen <>

We'd like to remind readers that the responses to queries are usually best posted to the individual asking the question. That individual is then strongly encouraged to post a summary to the list. This policy was instituted to help control the huge volume of mail on LINGUIST; so we would appreciate your cooperating with it whenever it seems appropriate.


  1. El-Kareh/Tharwat, Psycholinguistics Software
  2. Domenico LEMBO, *Praeverbium* and "empty/full preverb" distinction
  3. Asad B. Sayeed, North American (Canadian and US) dialects
  4. sanooch na-thalang, Plurality in numeral classifier languages

Message 1: Psycholinguistics Software

Date: Sun, 29 Mar 1998 08:20:21 +0200
From: El-Kareh/Tharwat <>
Subject: Psycholinguistics Software

Please could some one inform me if there is in the market a software
which could help me in measuring the listening abilities of the
learnes thanks a lot 

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Message 2: *Praeverbium* and "empty/full preverb" distinction

Date: Sun, 29 Mar 1998 15:32:03 +0100
From: Domenico LEMBO <>
Subject: *Praeverbium* and "empty/full preverb" distinction

A few weeks ago I put a query about the concept of "preverb" (lat.
praeverbium, fr. pre/verb, germ. Praeverb), asking for references on
its history and especially on the origin of the terminological
distinction between "empty preverb" and "full preverb". There was
nearly no answer except an useful note by Gary Toops, pointing out
that this distinction is strongly rooted in Russian grammatical
tradition. Nothing more, unfortunately. So one keeps wondering where
and when these notions emerge, as well as where and when the term
*praeverbium* as distinguished from *praepositio* and referring to a
verbal particle comes to life again, after its first known occurrence
in Varro's *De lingua latina* (VI 38; VI 82). We do'nt know whether
Varro himself creates this notion. We do'nt know who resumes it. We
can only suppose that it may surface again somewhere in medieval
grammar and be later resumed in early modern age, until it establishes
itself and even provides a basis for the subsequent distinction
between "empty" and "full" preverb. Anyway, references are badly
needed. Someone on the list is likely to know much more about this


D. Lembo

P.S. Is the question an irrelevant one? Well, hardly so. For the
notion of "preverb" itself is not an irrelevant one. Of course, the
common feeling in English-speaking linguistics is that such term is
almost superfluous, because it is tantamount to "verbal
prefix". However, this common feeling is just ill-founded. The notion
of "preverb" is much wider and categorizes (although imperfectly) an
even wider phenomenon, what needs and deserves to be thoroughly
rethought. The notion of "verbal prefix" is totally inadequate to meet
these requirements.

Domenico LEMBO
Dip. di Filologia Classica
Facolta' di Lettere - Universita' di Napoli
Via Porta di Massa 1
80134 Napoli
fax: +39-81-7810828
ph: +39-81-5800534
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Message 3: North American (Canadian and US) dialects

Date: Sun, 29 Mar 1998 11:17:38 -0500 (EST)
From: Asad B. Sayeed <>
Subject: North American (Canadian and US) dialects

Can anyone list for me some web sites and other materials (preferably
web sites) dealing with differences in dialect across North America,
particularly differences in Canadian and USAmerican speech and usage.
Also, some sites (in English) on the state of French in North America
would be useful as well. (I don't need anything specifically about
Mexico, just English and French-speaking regions.)

Thank you,

Asad B. Sayeed
 Vulcan purveyor of logic and enlightenment bound and gagged in trunk.
 ** DO NOT OPEN **
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Message 4: Plurality in numeral classifier languages

Date: Sun, 29 Mar 1998 06:43:41 -0800 (PST)
From: sanooch na-thalang <>
Subject: Plurality in numeral classifier languages

Dear Linguists

I have a query concerning the expression of plurality in numeral
classifier languages. In Thai, for example, 'child + two + classifier'
is the equivalent of the English 'two children'. Would you consider
that Thai expresses plurality through lexicalisation or
pragmaticalisation? Some scholars think that languages like Thai
express meanings through the pragmatic relations, not syntactic
relations, between linguistic elements. Others said that this is
lexicalisation. What do you think about it?

Sanooch Na-Thalang
Ph.D candidate
Language and Linguistic Department
University of Essex
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