Semantics

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By Beth Levin, Malka Rappaport Hovav

The connection among verbs and their arguments is a extensively debated subject in linguistics. This entire survey offers an up to date review of this significant region of analysis, exploring present theories of the way a verb’s semantics can verify the morphosyntactic awareness of its arguments. Assuming a detailed connection among verb that means and syntactic constitution, it presents a bridge among lexical semantic and syntactic examine, synthesizing the result of paintings from a number of linguistic subdisciplines and in quite a few theoretical frameworks.

The first 4 chapters survey major theories approximately occasion constitution and con- ceptualization. The 5th and 6th chapters specialize in the mapping from lexical semantics to morphosyntax, and comprise an in depth dialogue of the thematic hierarchy. The 7th bankruptcy stories remedies of a number of argument actual- ization. With priceless bibliographic references and transparent definitions of appropriate phrases, this ebook can be useful to scholars and researchers in syntax and semantics, in addition to these in comparable fields.

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31) a. Brutus killed Caesar. b. ∗ Caesar died from/of Brutus. (32) a. I melted the chocolate. b. ∗ The chocolate melted in/from me. Therefore, it seems that the factors that determine subjecthood are quite different from those that determine expression as an oblique; the latter involve much finer-grained semantic distinctions than the former. Two additional considerations pose a challenge for the algorithm determining the subject. First, patients which are expressible as direct objects of transitive verbs can sometimes be expressed as subjects of the intransitive uses of the same verbs, as in (33) and (34), or of semantically related intransitive verbs, as in (35) and (36).

Levin and Rappaport Hovav 1995; Schlesinger 1995), as we illustrate with data from English in (24) and Hebrew in (25). (24) a. b. c. d. The The The The storm destroyed the crop. bulldozer flattened the hovels. child hated the spinach. old machine spews smoke. (25) a. Ha-se’ara harsa et ha-yevul. ’ b. 6 When subjects are not agents and objects are not patients 25 c. Ha-yeled sana et ha-tered. ’ d. Ha-mexona ha-yeSana poletet aSan. ’ In English the range of subjects can be even wider, as noted by Hawkins (1985), citing Rohdenburg (1974), and Perlmutter and Postal (1984).

D. e. Pat Pat Pat Pat Pat came came came came came to the library. from the cafeteria. from the cafeteria to the library. towards us. through the woods. On a semantic role list approach, these different uses of come have the verb appearing with a goal, as in (a), a source, as in (b), both a source and a goal, as in (c), what Jackendoff (1983: 165) calls a direction, as in (d), and what he calls a route, as in (e). Source and goal figure in most semantic role inventories. Direction and route are not typically included in such inventories, but that in itself is not a problem.

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