Understanding Key Terms in Sentence Formation essay

Explain how the examples in (1) and (2) allow us to determine that be is a non-lexical verb, whereas seem is a lexical verb. Provide another piece of evidence to support your answer. 1. (1) a. They are not hilarious b. *They seem not hilarious 2. (2) a. Are they hilarious? B. *Seem they hilarious? Take now the examples in (3). How can they help us to further classify be? What syntactic position does be occupy in the structure as opposed to must? Provide another example to justify your answer and the p-marker of (AAA). (3) a.

They must have being hilarious b. … And their sisters must have too b’… And their sisters must too b”… *and their sisters too 1 . Constituency tests Sentence (b) shows an example of the syntactic process known as gapping. Gapping is a type of medial ellipsis where two clauses are conjoined and one element (or more), which is the same in both clauses, is omitted, leaving a gap in the middle of the 2nd clause (˜). In this sentence we see that there are two clauses, the first one: I argue about politics, and the second one: my mom about religion.

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These two clauses are conjoined by the conjunction and, and if we look at the second clause we can see the gap is in the position the verb argue used in the first clause should be so the omitted element is the verb argue. Furthermore, only phrases can appear after a gaped constituent and if we look at the constituent placed after the gap of the omitted verb argue we see it is a prepositional phrase, because about is a preposition and it is the head of that phrase. Sentence (c) shows an example of the syntactic process known as shared constituent coordination.

In this sentence we see two conjuncts, the first one: Wallace designed an enormous, and the second one: grooming bully a gigantic conjoined by the conjunction but. These two conjuncts seem to share the sequence of words tin moon rocket, placed at the end of the sentence. Therefore, we can argue that this sentence is somehow an elliptical form of: Wallace designed and enormous tin moon rocket, but Grooming built a gigantic tin moon rocket. As we see, (c) would be a grammatical sentence because the sequence shared between the two conjuncts is a constituent of each of them.

Moreover, shared constituent coordination is only possible when the shared string is an intermediate or a maximal constituent of each Of the conjuncts. Therefore, in this sentence shared constituent coordination is possible because tin moon rocket is a noun phrase, a maximal constituent. Sentence (d) shows an example of the syntactic process known as UP-ellipsis. UP-ellipsis must be introduced by an auxiliary verb or by the infinitive particle to. If we look at this sentence we see that to is included in the sentence, that is, it is not elided with the UP omitted.

Therefore, we can conclude that sentence (d) is an example of UP-ellipsis because the particle to is not part of the UP, if it were it should has been elided. Sentence (e) shows an example of the syntactic process known as ordinary coordination. In this sentence we find two heads of two VSP, have stopped and said. Ordinary coordination can be used as a test for minimal, intermediate and phrasal constituency. In this case it is used as an intermediate constituency because the two heads are coordinated by the conjunction and.

Therefore, it is an example of ordinary coordination because only constituents and constituents of the same category can be conjoined. 2. Analysis of data: Lexical vs.. Non-lexical verbs Nan-lexical verbs (auxiliary and modal verbs) do not express action. Instead, they connect the subject of the verb to additional information about the subject. That is, they express grammatical meaning. On the contrary, lexical verbs typically express action, state, or other predicate meaning. Furthermore, inside the non-lexical verbs we distinguish between auxiliary and modal verbs.

Modal verbs (can, must, should, would, could, may, shall, and will), since they are always inflected for tense, are inherently associated with tense and inserted in INFO. On the other hand, auxiliary verbs (be and have) are verbs that head their own UP. In this short essay I will intend to argue that there exist a number of syntactic processes, i. E. The ones illustrated in (1 which justify that these verbs are structurally different. To see the structural distinction between non-lexical verbs and lexical verbs there exist the impressionistic tests. These tests involve four syntactic properties deemed the NICE properties by Huddles and Peplum (2002:92-112). NICE is an acronym for Negation, Inversion, Code, and Emphasis. Auxiliaries have the NICE properties, while lexical verbs do not. These constitute the standard syntactic arguments that auxiliaries and full lexical verbs are two distinct types of syntactic entities” (T. E. Payne, 2011: 281). Now, I will analyze examples (1) and (2) to understand why the verb be ND the verb seem are syntactically different: Copular and linking verbs refer to the ones that take Subject Complements, that is, they are non-lexical verbs.

Those sort of verbs have the NICE properties: In example (1 a) the verb be follows the NICE properties. In particular, the negation clauses property because “in negative clauses, the negative particle not follows an auxiliary’ (T. E. Payne, 2011: 282). So we can argue then that the verb be here is a non-lexical verb because it follows the rules of the NICE properties. In example (1 b) we see that the linking verb seem does not have the NICE repertories because the sentence is ungrammatical. So we can argue the verb requires do-support to be grammatical, i. E: i. They do not seem hilarious.

Therefore, the verb seem here is a lexical verb because it does not follow the NICE properties. In example (AAA) the verb be follows again the NICE properties. In particular, the inversion property, since this property says that “in certain questions the first auxiliary and the Subject must invert (exchange positions)”(T. E. Payne, 201 1: 283). We can see the exchange position of this example (Are they hilarious? ) showing the sentence in affirmative way: ii. They are hilarious. Therefore, the verb be here is a non-lexical verb because it follows the rules of the NICE properties.

On the contrary, in example (b) the linking verb seem does not follow the inversion property because the sentence is ungrammatical. Therefore we can argue the verb seem requires do-support to be grammatical. Moreover, there is no inversion and the do-support has to be inserted before the Subject, i. E: iii. Do they seem hilarious? As we have pointed out, auxiliary verbs connect the subject of the verb to additional information about the subject. In this case, in example (AAA) be is an auxiliary verb because it is connecting the subject of the verb to additional information about the subject, hilarious which is a Subject Complement.

In example (b) we find a UP-ellipsis where the auxiliary verb been has been elided. The sentence is grammatical because auxiliary verbs are able to be elided or not in UP-ellipsis. In example (b’) we find a UP-ellipsis where the auxiliary verb have and the also auxiliary verb been have been elided. The sentence is grammatical since auxiliary verbs are able to be elided or not in UP-ellipsis. In example (b”) we find a UP-ellipsis where the modal verb must and the auxiliary verbs have and been have been elided.

The sentence is ungrammatical because modal verbs cannot be elided in UP-ellipsis. We can argue then that modal verbs cannot be omitted in UP-ellipsis because they are inserted in inflection, while auxiliary verbs head their own UP-auk so they are not INFO. One example to see co-occurrence with modal verbs would form an ungrammatical sentence could be: vi. They must may have been hilarious. In conclusion, it can only appear one modal per sentence while that modal can co-occur with one, two or three auxiliaries as we see in example (AAA):

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