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Copula (linguistics)
In linguistics, a copula (plural: copulas or copulae; abbreviated ) is a word or phrase that links the subject of a sentence to a subject complement, such as the word ''is'' in the sentence "The sky is blue" or the phrase ''was not being'' in the sentence "It was not being co-operative." The word ''copula'' derives from the Latin noun for a "link" or "tie" that connects two different things. A copula is often a verb or a verb-like word, though this is not universally the case. A verb that is a copula is sometimes called a copulative or copular verb. In English primary education grammar courses, a copula is often called a linking verb. In other languages, copulas show more resemblances to pronouns, as in Classical Chinese and Guarani, or may take the form of suffixes attached to a noun, as in Korean, Beja, and Inuit languages. Most languages have one main copula, although some (like Spanish, Portuguese and Thai) have more than one, while others have none. In the case ...
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Linguistics
Linguistics is the science, scientific study of human language. It is called a scientific study because it entails a comprehensive, systematic, objective, and precise analysis of all aspects of language, particularly its nature and structure. Linguistics is concerned with both the Cognition, cognitive and social aspects of language. It is considered a scientific field as well as an academic discipline; it has been classified as a social science, natural science, cognitive science,Thagard, PaulCognitive Science, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Fall 2008 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.). or part of the humanities. Traditional areas of linguistic analysis correspond to phenomena found in human linguistic systems, such as syntax (rules governing the structure of sentences); semantics (meaning); Morphology (linguistics), morphology (structure of words); phonetics (speech sounds and equivalent gestures in sign languages); phonology (the abstract sound system of a particular ...
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Inuit Languages
The Inuit languages are a closely related group of indigenous American languages traditionally spoken across the North American Arctic and adjacent subarctic, reaching farthest south in Labrador. The related Yupik languages (spoken in western and southern Alaska, as well as in nearby Russia's farthest east, though severely endangered there) are the two main branches of Eskaleut, a primary language family. The Inuit live primarily in three countries: Greenland (Kingdom of Denmark), Canada (specifically in Nunavut, Northwest Territories, the Nunavik region of Quebec, and the Nunatsiavut and Nunatuĸavut regions of Labrador), and the United States (specifically the coast of Alaska). The total population of Inuit speaking their traditional languages is difficult to assess with precision, since most counts rely on self-reported census data that may not accurately reflect usage or competence. Greenland census estimates place the number of speakers of varieties of Inuit languag ...
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Word Order
In linguistics, word order (also known as linear order) is the order of the syntactic constituents of a language. Word order typology studies it from a cross-linguistic perspective, and examines how different languages employ different orders. Correlations between orders found in different syntactic sub-domains are also of interest. The primary word orders that are of interest are * the ''constituent order'' of a clause, namely the relative order of subject, object, and verb; * the order of modifiers (adjectives, numerals, demonstratives, possessives, and adjuncts) in a noun phrase; * the order of adverbials. Some languages use relatively fixed word order, often relying on the order of constituents to convey grammatical information. Other languages—often those that convey grammatical information through inflection—allow more flexible word order, which can be used to encode pragmatic information, such as topicalisation or focus. However, even languages with flexible ...
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Adjective
In linguistics, an adjective (abbreviated ) is a word that generally modifies a noun or noun phrase or describes its referent. Its semantic role is to change information given by the noun. Traditionally, adjectives were considered one of the main parts of speech of the English language, although historically they were classed together with nouns. Nowadays, certain words that usually had been classified as adjectives, including ''the'', ''this'', ''my'', etc., typically are classed separately, as determiners. Here are some examples: * That's a funny idea. ( attributive) * That idea is funny. ( predicative) * * The good, the bad, and the funny. ( substantive) Etymology ''Adjective'' comes from Latin ', a calque of grc, ἐπίθετον ὄνομα, epítheton ónoma, additional noun (whence also English '' epithet''). In the grammatical tradition of Latin and Greek, because adjectives were inflected for gender, number, and case like nouns (a process called declension), th ...
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Complement (grammar)
In grammar, a complement is a word, phrase, or clause that is necessary to complete the meaning of a given expression. Complements are often also arguments (expressions that help complete the meaning of a predicate). Predicative, subject and object complements In many non-theoretical grammars, the terms '' subject complement'' and ''object complement'' are employed to denote the predicative expressions (such as predicative adjectives and nominals) that serve to assign a property to a subject or an object: ::Ryan is upset. – Predicative adjective as subject complement ::Rachelle is the boss. – Predicative nominal as subject complement ::That made Michael lazy. – Predicative adjective as object complement ::We call Rachelle the boss. – Predicative nominal as object complement This terminology is used in grammar books: However, this use of terminology is avoided by many modern theories of syntax, which typically view the expressions in bold as part of the clause predic ...
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Verb Phrase
In linguistics, a verb phrase (VP) is a syntactic unit composed of a verb and its arguments except the subject of an independent clause or coordinate clause. Thus, in the sentence ''A fat man quickly put the money into the box'', the words ''quickly put the money into the box'' constitute a verb phrase; it consists of the verb ''put'' and its arguments, but not the subject ''a fat man''. A verb phrase is similar to what is considered a ''predicate'' in traditional grammars. Verb phrases generally are divided among two types: finite, of which the head of the phrase is a finite verb; and nonfinite, where the head is a nonfinite verb, such as an infinitive, participle or gerund. Phrase structure grammars acknowledge both types, but dependency grammars treat the subject as just another verbal dependent, and they do not recognize the finite verbal phrase constituent. Understanding verb phrase analysis depends on knowing which theory applies in context. In phrase structure gramma ...
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Prepositional Phrase
An adpositional phrase, in linguistics, is a syntactic category that includes ''prepositional phrases'', ''postpositional phrases'', and ''circumpositional phrases''. Adpositional phrases contain an adposition (preposition, postposition, or circumposition) as head and usually a complement such as a noun phrase. Language syntax treats adpositional phrases as units that act as arguments or adjuncts. Prepositional and postpositional phrases differ by the order of the words used. Languages that are primarily head-initial such as English predominantly use prepositional phrases whereas head-final languages predominantly employ postpositional phrases. Many languages have both types, as well as circumpositional phrases. Types There are three types of adpositional phrases: prepositional phrases, postpositional phrases, and circumpositional phrases. Prepositional phrases The underlined phrases in the following sentences are examples of prepositional phrases in English. The prepos ...
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Noun Phrase
In linguistics, a noun phrase, or nominal (phrase), is a phrase that has a noun or pronoun as its head or performs the same grammatical function as a noun. Noun phrases are very common cross-linguistically, and they may be the most frequently occurring phrase type. Noun phrases often function as verb subjects and objects, as predicative expressions and as the complements of prepositions. Noun phrases can be embedded inside each other; for instance, the noun phrase ''some of his constituents'' contains the shorter noun phrase ''his constituents''. In some more modern theories of grammar, noun phrases with determiners are analyzed as having the determiner as the head of the phrase, see for instance Chomsky (1995) and Hudson (1990). Identification Some examples of noun phrases are underlined in the sentences below. The head noun appears in bold. ::This election-year's politics are annoying for many people. ::Almost every sentence contains at least one noun phrase. ::Current e ...
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Predicative Expression
A predicative expression (or just predicative) is part of a clause predicate, and is an expression that typically follows a copula (or linking verb), e.g. ''be'', ''seem'', ''appear'', or that appears as a second complement of a certain type of verb, e.g. ''call'', ''make'', ''name'', etc. The most frequently acknowledged types of predicative expressions are predicative adjectives (also ''predicate adjectives'') and predicative nominals (also ''predicate nominals''). The main trait of all predicative expressions is that they serve to express a property that is assigned to a "subject", whereby this subject is usually the clause subject, but at times it can be the clause object. A primary distinction is drawn between predicative (also ''predicate'') and attributive expressions. Further, predicative expressions are typically ''not'' clause arguments, and they are also typically ''not'' clause adjuncts. There is hence a three-way distinction between predicative expressions, argum ...
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Predicate (grammar)
The term predicate is used in one of two ways in linguistics and its subfields. The first defines a predicate as everything in a standard declarative sentence except the subject, and the other views it as just the main content verb or associated predicative expression of a clause. Thus, by the first definition the predicate of the sentence ''Frank likes cake'' is ''likes cake''. By the second definition, the predicate of the same sentence is just the content verb ''likes'', whereby ''Frank'' and ''cake'' are the arguments of this predicate. Differences between these two definitions can lead to confusion. Syntax Traditional grammar The notion of a predicate in traditional grammar traces back to Aristotelian logic. A predicate is seen as a property that a subject has or is characterized by. A predicate is therefore an expression that can be ''true of'' something. Thus, the expression "is moving" is true of anything that is moving. This classical understanding of predicates ...
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Clause (grammar)
In language, a clause is a constituent that comprises a semantic predicand (expressed or not) and a semantic predicate. A typical clause consists of a subject and a syntactic predicate, the latter typically a verb phrase composed of a verb with any objects and other modifiers. However, the subject is sometimes unvoiced if it is retrievable from context, especially in null-subject language but also in other languages, including English instances of the imperative mood. A complete simple sentence includes a single clause with a finite verb. Complex sentences contain multiple clauses including at least one '' independent clause'' (meaning, a clause that can stand alone as a simple sentence) coordinated either with at least one dependent clause (also called an embedded clause) or with one or more independent clauses. Two major distinctions A primary division for the discussion of clauses is the distinction between independent clauses and dependent clauses. An independent clause ...
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Zero Copula
Zero copula is a linguistic phenomenon whereby the subject is joined to the predicate without overt marking of this relationship (like the copula "to be" in English). One can distinguish languages that simply do not have a copula and languages that have a copula that is optional in some contexts. Many languages exhibit this in some contexts, including Assamese, Bengali, Kannada, Malay/ Indonesian, Turkish, Tamil, Dravidian, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi, Guarani, Kazakh, Turkmen, Japanese, Ukrainian, Russian, Belarusian, Tatar, Azerbaijani, Swahili, Hungarian, Hebrew, Arabic, Berber, Ganda, Hawaiian, Sinhala, Irish, Welsh, Nahuatl, Maori, Mongolian, Greenlandic, Lithuanian, Latvian, Polish, Slovakian, Quechua and American Sign Language. Dropping the copula is also found, to a lesser extent, in English and many other languages, used most frequently in rhetoric, casual speech, non-standard varieties, and headlinese, the writing style used in newspaper ...
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