Adjective Classes: A Cross-Linguistic Typology (Explorations by R. M. W. Dixon, Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald

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By R. M. W. Dixon, Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald

The experiences during this quantity recommend that each language has an adjective category, yet those differ in personality and in measurement. In its grammatical houses, an adjective type could beas just like nouns, or to verbs, or to either, or to neither.ze. while in a few languages the adjective category is big and will be freely further to, in others it's small and closed. with only a dozen or so contributors. The booklet will curiosity students and complex scholars of language typology and of the syntax and semantics of adjectives.

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G. 'this man is the chief), not an adjective. 3 This has a rather different meaning from a clause in which the adjective is intransitive predicate, as in (26b). 3 The nominalizer can be omitted from a sentence like (i6a) in marked circumstances, when it is in emphatic or contrastive function. 22 (26) R. M. W. PREDICATE sugar sweet 'sugar is sweet' In some languages where adjectives may function both as head of an intransitive predicate and also as modifier in an NP, there is a definite preference for employing them in the former function.

These will be discussed one at a time. 1. The internal syntax of NPs The prototypical NP has a noun as head and one (or, sometimes, several) adjectives as modifiers. Where this scheme is closely adhered to there is no difficulty in distinguishing between nouns and adjectives; this applies in English, in Hua (Papuan region, Haiman 1980: 268-9),m Basque (Saltarelli 1988:144), in Upper Necaxa To tonac (Beck 2000), and in Papantla Totonac (Chapter 6 below). However, there are some languages in which a noun may also function as modifier.

For instance, Swadesh (1946: 320-1) says of Chitimacha (an isolate, previously spoken in Louisiana): 'very much like certain kinds of verbs is the adjective, part of whose inflection coincides with that of the verb, but which has two additional forms called the substantival singular and plural. Moreover, it is precisely the substantival forms which are the most commonly used'. In other languages, adjectives may be most similar to one of nouns and verbs, but have some properties in common with the other.

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