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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.

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Query Details

Query Subject:   Qs: three correlations
Author:   Jose-Luis Mendivil
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Query:   Dear linguists:

I've read here and there (although I don't remember where exactly)
that the following three correlations are correct:

a) OV languages show object agreement more usually than VO languages
b) Most ergative languages display OV order
c) Most ergative languages show object agreemen

I would like to know if these three statements (or any of them) are
actually true and, if so, where could I find supporting statistical

(Bonus: Of course, if you have an idea (or theory) about why these
facts should be so -if they are at all-, I would be glad to know it).

I will post a summary of the responses.

Thank you very much in advance,

Jose-Luis Mendivil
University of Zaragoza (Spain)

LL Issue: 14.1529
Date posted: 28-May-2003


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