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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: A multi-dimensional approach to the category ‘verb’ in Cantonese
Author: Elaine J. Francis
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Purdue University
Author: Stephen Matthews
Institution: University of Hong Kong
Linguistic Field: Syntax
Subject Language: Chinese, Yue
Abstract: Cantonese exhibits a pattern of variation among verbs that has often been interpreted as distinguishing a category of adjectives or a subcategory of adjectival verbs. However, neither of these approaches takes into account the complex patterns of overlap among the purported categories or subcategories. To account for these patterns, we propose a multi-dimensional, feature-based analysis, whereby morphological, phonological, syntactic, and semantic features interact to determine the distribution of each verb. While all verbs bear the same syntactic category feature, there are other features that affect the distribution of verbs independently of syntactic category. For example, constructions that resemble adjectival constructions in other languages license the semantic classes of verbs that are permanent, gradable, and/or non-dynamic, while constructions that resemble verbal constructions in other languages license the semantic classes of verbs that are dynamic, non-gradable, and/or non-permanent. Typological implications of this analysis are also considered.


This article appears IN Journal of Linguistics Vol. 41, Issue 2.

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