English Syntax - 2nd Edition

English Syntax and Argumentation (Modern Linguistics)
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go Yes, I. No, she. Yes, they. You are eating in a restaurant. The waiter thinks you have finished and starts to take your. You say: Wait a minute! You phone to reserve a table. Perhaps she has been successful. Ask a , her. You say DAVE: Really? Have you ever been to China? Here, Dave and Jane are talking about the places Jane has visited in her life which is a period that continues until now.

English Sentence Correction Exercise - Basic English Practice

Have you? For example: Don is havinga driving lesson. Make questions from the fiafords in brackets. I -3 most beautiful place I ever I visit? Some sentences are positive and some negative.

How is Amy these days? Are you hungry? Can you play chess? Yes, but. Did you enjoy your holiday? Is Brussels an interesting place? Mike was late for Work again today. Do you like caviar? The car broke down again yesterday. Not again! That's the second time. I read a newspaper yesterday but I. Last year the company made a profit but this year.

Tracy worked hard at school last term but. Our football team won a lot of games last season but we. You ask Len is playing tennis. Maria is in London. She says Present perfect continuous I have been doing It has been raining. Study this example situation: Is it raining? No, but the ground is wet. It has been raining. Have you been running? What have you been doing? It has been raining for two hours. Study this example situation: It is raining now. It began raining two hours ago and it is still raining. How long has it been raining?

We often use the present perfect continuous in this way, especially with how long, for. The activity is still happening as in this example or has just stopped. How long have you been learning English? Where have you been? You can use the present perfect continuous for actions repeated over a period of time: 9 Debbie is a very good tennis player.

The Linguistic Structure of Modern English

V Write a question for each situation. John looks sunburnt. You have just arrived to meet a friend Who is waiting for you. You ask: you I wait. The rain started two hours ago. We started waiting for the bus 20 minutes ago. Marystarted working in London on 18 January. You still write to each other regularly now. Eat the verb into the present continuous I am -ing etc. Hello, Tom. Stop it! She has been painting the ceiling.

Definitions, Examples, and Discussions of English Grammar

Has been painting is the present perfect continuous. We are interested in the activity.

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An authoritative, self-contained introduction to the subject for students who have had no prior coursework in syntactic theory. English Syntax is an authoritative. uxisebep.ga: English Syntax, 2nd Edition (): C. L. Baker: Books.

It does not matter whether something has been finished or not. In this example, the activity painting the ceiling has not been finished. Compare these examples: 0 My hands are very dirty. She should smoke less. What have you been doing since we last met? Have you been playing tennis? We use the continuous to ask or say how long for an activity that is still happening : 0 How long have you been reading that book?

The ceiling was white. Now it is blue. She has painted the ceiling. Has painted is the present perfect simple. Here, the important thing is that something has been finished. We are interested in the result of the activity the painted ceiling , not b in the activity itself. The packet is empty. What have you done with it? We use the simple to ask or say how much, how many or how many times completed actions : 0 How many pages of that book have you read? He is still reading it and now he is on page 5 3. PaQ35 90 far- 2 Linda is from Australia.

She is travelling round Europe at the moment. She began her tour three months ago. He began playing tennis when he was ten years old. This year he is national champion again — for the fourth time. They still make films. She is waiting for you. You ask: ' how many fish I catch? You ask: ' how many people I invite? You ask: ' how long I teach? Study this example situation: Bob and Alice are married.

They got married exactly 20 years ago, so today is their 20th wedding anniversary. They have been married for 20 years. We say: They are married. She has been in hospital since Monday. We have known each other for a long time. How long have you been Waiting? Have you been waiting long? But we use the simple with always: 9 John has always lived in London. For a list of these verbs, see Unit 4A.

For have see Unit Correct them if they are wrong. I 1 Bob is a friend of mine. I know him very well. I know him for a long time. How long are you living there? How long do ygu havg it? Read the situations and write questions from the words in brackets. You ask him: how long I be I in hospital? You ask her: how long I teach I English?

You ask your friend: how long I be I in Australia? M ' 5 Tim always wears the same jacket. You ask him:. I 6 You are talking to a friend about Alan. Alan now works at the airport. You ask your friend: how long I work I at the airport? You ask him: how long I have I driving lessons? She tells you that she lives in Glasgow. You ask her: I always I live I in Glasgow?

Do you see Ann very often? Is Margaret married? Are you waiting for me? Do you still play tennis?

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Is Jim watching TV? Do you watch TV a lot?

Have you got a headache? George is never ill, is he? Are you feeling ill? Do you still go to the cinema a lot? Would you like to go to New York one day? Chapters feature clear explanations of technical terms, easy-to-follow examples and interactive exercises to illustrate key ideas. Provides a complete overview of syntax, making it ideal for both introductory modules on the structure of the English language and discrete introductory courses Encourages students to engage in syntactic argumentation and develops their ability to form a coherent syntactic argument Contains a wealth of graded exercises that will help students to consolidate their learning at every step Suggestions for further reading provided at the end of every chapter Clear and comprehensive glossary of key terminology, with cross-referencing to enhance students' understanding of how the terms fit together.

From: words, word classes and phrases. More on form: clauses and sentences. The function-form interface. Predicates, arguments and thematic roles.

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We use for when we say a period of time We use since when we say the start of a two hours, six weeks etc. The book is not suitable for elementary learners. Some mistakes were made by Ed. The most central type of finite clause is tensed , i. On the basis of the presence or absence of the Complement types considered so far we can distinguish the following canonical clause structures:.

Cross-categorical generalisations: X-bar syntax. More on clauses. Tense, aspect and mood. Syntactic argumentation. Constituency: movement and substitution. Constituency: some additional tests. Predicates and arguments revisited. Here the doctor's has the same function, Determiner, as the in the car , but it is not a word and hence not a determinative: as far as its class is concerned it's a noun phrase.

The above scheme differs from that of traditional grammar in three respects:. Our determinative class is much larger, containing not just the and a , but also words like some , any , all , each , every, no , etc. For each of the first six of the word classes in [3] there is a corresponding class of phrases whose Head belongs to that class. In the following examples, the phrase is enclosed in brackets and the Head underlined:.

He [ is still in London ]. I'm [ glad you could come ]. It's [ quite extraordinarily ] good. We've [ very little ] money left.

A Linguistic Introduction to Sentence Structure, 2nd Edition

He wrote a book [ on sharks ]. A canonical clause consists of a Subject followed by a Predicate. The Predicate is realised by a verb phrase; the Subject is mostly realised by a noun phrase, but there are other possibilities too, most importantly a subordinate clause:. In canonical clauses describing an action the Subject will be associated with the semantic role of actor, or agent, as in [5i]. But many clauses don't express actions: we heard an explosion , for example, describes a sensory experience, and here the Subject is associated with the role of experiencer.

There are numerous different kinds of semantic role that can be associated with the Subject: what the role is in a particular instance will depend on the meaning of the clause, especially of the verb. Meaning therefore does not provide a reliable way of identifying the Subject. But this function has a good few distinctive grammatical properties which together generally make it easy to identify. Here are some of them. Its default position - the one it occupies unless there are special reasons for placing it elsewhere - is before the Predicate. You can generally change a declarative clause into an interrogative by inverting the Subject with the first auxiliary verb; if there is no auxiliary in the declarative you need to insert the appropriate form of do.

The boss is in her office. Is the boss in her office? Everyone signed the petition. Did everyone sign the petition? To seek confirmation of a statement you can add an interrogative tag, consisting of an auxiliary verb and a personal pronoun Subject which relates back to the Subject of the clause to which the tag is attached: The boss is in her office, isn't she? Her son plays the piano. Her sons play the piano. At the next layer of structure below the Predicate we distinguish three functions.

The Predicator is the function filled by the verb. The verb is the Head of the verb phrase, and Predicator is the special term used for the Head of the verb phrase forming the Predicate of a clause. Thus in [7b] play the piano is a verb phrase functioning as Predicate while play is a verb functioning as Predicator. Complement and Adjunct are different kinds of Dependent, distinguished by the licensing condition.

Complements can occur only if they are licensed by the Head verb: the verb must belong to a subclass that permits or requires a Complement of the type in question. Adjuncts are not subject to this restriction. Here the lawn is admissible because the verb mow unlike disappear , for example allows a Dependent of this kind, so the lawn is a Complement. But a Dependent indicating time can occur with any verb, so before it started to rain is an Adjunct.

We will look further at Complements in the next subsection. As for Adjuncts, they are usually realised by adverb phrases, preposition phrases, subordinate clauses, or a very narrow range of noun phrases. They can be divided into various semantic subtypes, such as Adjuncts of time, place, manner, etc. Two important subtypes of Complement are the Object and the Predicative Complement:. Object: Ed blamed the minister.

Predicative Comp : Ed was a minister.. While thousands of verbs license an Object, only a fairly small number license a Predicative Complement, and of these be is by far the most common: others include become , remain , appear , seem , etc. There are several grammatical properties that distinguish Objects from Predicative Complements, of which the two most important ones are illustrated in [11]:. Ed blamed the minister. The minister was blamed by Ed. Ed was a minister. Ed was innocent. Thus the Object of active [ia] corresponds to the Subject of passive [ib], whereas [iib] is not a possible passive version of [iia].

Here and below the asterisk indicates that what follows is ungrammatical. A clause may contain two Objects, distinguished as Direct and Indirect. In canonical clauses, the Indirect Object always precedes the Direct Object, and typically but not invariably is associated with the semantic role of recipient or beneficiary:. He became angry. This made him angry. He was a charlatan.

They considered him a charlatan. On the basis of the presence or absence of the Complement types considered so far we can distinguish the following canonical clause structures:. The names reflect the fact that there are two dimensions of contrast:. The names apply in the first instance to the clause constructions, and then derivatively to the verbs that appear in these constructions.

Thus disappear is an ordinary intransitive verb, be a complex-intransitive one, and so on. But it must be borne in mind that the majority of verbs can appear in more than one of them, and hence belong to more than one class. Find , for example, commonly appears in [iii] We found the key , [iv] We found her co-operative , and [v] We found her a job. The Complements considered so far have been noun phrases or adjective phrases, but these are not the only possibilities.

Complements often have the form of preposition phrases or subordinate clauses:. She went to Paris. She took him to Paris. She relied on her instinct. He congratulated her on her promotion. He said he was sorry. He told her he was sorry. We intend to leave on Tuesday. I advise you to leave on Tuesday. In the [a] examples here the underlined preposition phrase [i-ii] or subordinate clause [iii-iv] is the only Complement, while in the [b] ones it follows an Object. We look at different kinds of subordinate clause in Section13, but there is one point to be made here about the prepositional constructions.

In [i] to contrasts with other prepositions such as over , from , via , beyond , etc. Most ditransitive verbs also belong to this latter class by virtue of licensing a preposition phrase with to or for instead of the Indirect Object: compare He gave some water to the prisoner and She baked a cake for me with [12] above. The most distinctive property of verbs is their inflection: they have a number of inflectional forms that are permitted or required in various grammatical constructions.

The great majority of verb lexemes have six inflectional forms, as illustrated in [16]:. It will be noticed that although we have distinguished six different inflectional forms , there are only four different shapes : checked , checks , check and checking. Thus the preterite and past participle of the lexeme check have the same shape, as do the plain present tense and the plain form. The same applies to all other regular verbs, i. But there are a good number of irregular verbs where the preterite and past participle do not have the same shape: take , for example, has took as its preterite and taken as its past participle.

This means that it is very easy to decide whether any particular instance of the shape check is a preterite form or a past participle. What you need to do is ask which form of a verb like take would be needed in the construction in question. Consider, then, the following examples:. If we substitute take for check in [i] the form we need is the past participle taken : She may have taken a break. So this checked is likewise a past participle.

And if we make the substitution in [ii] we need the preterite form took : I'm not sure whether she took a break or not. So the checked of [ii] is the preterite form. Note that when making the substitution you need to keep constant what precedes the verb e.

She may have in [i] since this is what determines the inflection that is required: what follows the verb is irrelevant and hence can be changed to suit the verb you are substituting. Let us now briefly review the six forms. This is a type of past tense: the type where the past tense is marked inflectionally rather than by means of an auxiliary verb. There are two present tense forms, one which occurs with a 3rd person singular subject, and one which occurs with any other subject: 1st person I check , 2nd person you check or plural they check. This is also identical with the base, but it is not a present tense form.

It is used in three constructions:. I will check them myself. The infinitival construction is very often marked by to , but it is also found without to after such verbs as can , may , will , do She didn't check the figures herself , make They made me check the figures myself , etc. The subjunctive is much the least frequent of the three constructions and belongs to somewhat formal style. There are two major factors that distinguish the plain form from the plain present:. It's the latter form that appears in the three constructions shown in [18]: Be quiet imperative ; It's better to be safe than sorry , I will be ready in time infinitival ; It's essential that she be told subjunctive.

So we can tell whether a given instance of check , say, is the plain present or the plain form by using the substitution test illustrated above, but this time substituting the verb be. Thus the check of We must check the figures is a plain form, not a plain present tense because we need the plain form of be in this position: We must be careful. This form always ends with the suffix ing. Traditional grammar distinguishes two forms with this suffix, the gerund and the present participle:. The idea was that a gerund is comparable to a noun, while a participle is comparable to an adjective.

Thus in [i] checking the figures is comparable to such checks , where checks is a noun; in [ii] checking the figures is Modifier to people and was therefore considered adjective-like since the most common type of Modifier to a noun is an adjective. This is used in two main constructions, the perfect and the passive:. The perfect is a past tense marked by the auxiliary verb have , while the most straightforward cases of the passive involve the auxiliary verb be. We have seen that there are two inflectional tenses in English: preterite and present; we review now the major uses of these tenses.

Three uses can be distinguished, as illustrated in [21]:. He arrived yesterday. She knew him well. Ed said he was ill. I thought it started tomorrow. I wish I knew the answer. I'd do it if you paid me. The event of his arriving took place in the past, and the state of her knowing him well obtained in the past it may still obtain now, but I'm talking about some time in the past. This is much the most frequent use, but it's important to be aware that the preterite doesn't always have this meaning.

This example shows very clearly that the backshift use is not the same as the past time use, for clearly the starting is not in the past. In [iiia] the subordinate clause has a counterfactual meaning under the influence of wish : you understand that I don't know the answer. The time is present, not past: I don't know it now. The conditional [iiib] is not counterfactual it doesn't rule out the possibility of your paying me , but it envisages your paying me as a somewhat remote possibility - rather less likely than with the present tense counterpart I'll do it if you pay me.

Note that the time of your possibly paying me is in the future. The two most important uses are seen in [22]:. I promise I'll help you. She lives in Sydney. Exams start next week. I'll go home when it gets dark. In [ia] the event of my promising is actually simultaneous with the utterance, for I perform the act of promising by saying this sentence.

In [ib] we have a state, and the present tense indicates that the state obtains at the time of speaking. In main clauses this is possible only when the event is in some way already scheduled, as in [iia].

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But this constraint does not apply in various kinds of subordinate clause such as we have in [iib]. We turn now to the important subclass of verbs called auxiliary verbs , or auxiliaries : they are quite markedly different in their grammatical behaviour from other verbs, which are called lexical verbs. The main members of the auxiliary class are shown in [23], where they are divided into two subclasses, modal and non-modal :.

Could , might , would and should are the preterite forms of can , may , will and shall respectively, though they differ considerably from other preterites, as we shall see. There are several constructions which require the presence of an auxiliary verb, the two most frequent of which involve Subject-auxiliary inversion and negation. We have seen that in canonical clauses the Subject precedes the verb whereas in most interrogative main clauses the Subject follows the first verb. The verb that precedes the Subject, however, must be an auxiliary verb: only auxiliaries can invert with the Subject.

She has taken the car. She took the car. Has she taken the car? If the declarative doesn't contain an auxiliary, as in [ib], it is necessary to insert the auxiliary do so that inversion can apply: Did she take the car? This do has no meaning: it is simply inserted to satisfy the grammatical rule requiring an auxiliary. The construction where not is used to negate the verb likewise requires that the verb be an auxiliary:. She has not taken the car. Again, if there is no auxiliary in the positive, do must be inserted to form the negative: She did not take the car.

A further, related, point is that auxiliaries, but not lexical verbs, have negative forms ending in the suffix n't : a more informal variant of [25iia] is She hasn't taken the car. Auxiliaries function as Head, not Dependent, in verb phrase structure. They mostly take non-finite clauses as Complement, like many lexical verbs.

Compare the examples in [26], where the verb phrase is enclosed in brackets, the Head is in capitals and underlining marks the non-finite clause functioning as its Complement:. We [ CAN answer their queries ]. We [ HELP answer their queries ]. She [ WAS checking the figures ]. He [ WAS attacked by a dog ]. He [ GOT attacked by a dog ]. The particular type of non-finite clause that is used depends on the Head verb, whether auxiliary or lexical.

Ought and intend license infinitivals with to , can and help infinitivals without to ; be , in one of its uses, and begin license a non-finite clause with a gerund-participle form of the verb; be , in a second use, and get license one with a past participle form of the verb. And similarly with the other examples. Little further need be said about do : it is used in constructions like Subject-auxiliary inversion and negation when required to satisfy the requirement that the construction contain an auxiliary. There is also a lexical verb do used in clauses like She did her best , I did him an injustice , etc.

Three uses of be can be distinguished, illustrated in :. They are watching TV. I've been working all morning. It was taken by Jill. He may be arrested. She was a friend of his. That is very likely. It generally serves to indicate that the situation - the action, event, state, or whatever - was, is or will be in progress at the time in question. There is no active counterpart of [iib] because the latter has no by phrase cf. Thus the interrogative of [a] is Was she a friend of his? In these examples the auxiliary has as its Complement not a non-finite clause but a noun phrase a friend of his and an adjective phrase very likely.

This verb belongs to both lexical and auxiliary classes.