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Query Details

Query Subject:   Existential Constructions
Author:   Ljuba Veselinova
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Linguistic LingField(s):  Typology

Query:   In English (as well as other languages I am familiar with) existence can be
expressed by a special 'existential construction' as in (i) below or by a
clause with the verb 'exist' as in (ii)

(i) There is such a thing as non-alcoholic beer
(ii) Non-alcololic beer exists

(i) represents the 'normal'/frequent/unmarked way to express existence
whereas (ii) can be shown to be marked in many ways: it is less frequently
used, functionally restricted etc.

When grammars report on existential constructions, typically constructions
of the type of (i) are presented. I would like to check in what other
languages there is marked construction like (ii) above used to express

The languages I know are Bulgarian, Swedish, French and Russian. I would
very much appreciate data from other languages.

Thanks a lot in advance! I will post a summary if there is enough interest.

All good wishes,
LL Issue: 18.1143
Date posted: 15-Apr-2007


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