The Philosophy of Grammar / Edition 1

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This study grew out of a series of lectures Jespersen gave at Columbia
University in 1909-10, called “An Introduction to English Grammar.”
It is the connected presentation of Jespersen's views of the general principles of grammar based on years of studying various languages through both direct observation of living speech and written and printed documents.

“[The Philosophy of Grammar and Analytic Syntax] set forth the most extensive and original theory of universal grammar prior to the work of Chomsky and other generative grammarians of the last thirty years.”—Arne Juul and Hans F. Nielsen, in Otto
Jespersen: Facets of His Life and Work

“Besides being one of the most perceptive observers and original thinkers that the field of linguistics has ever known, Jespersen was also one of its most entertaining writers, and reading The
Philosophy of Grammar is fun. Read it, enjoy it.”—James D.
McCawley, from the Introduction

Otto Jespersen (1860-1943), an authority on the growth and structure of language, was the Chair of the English Department at the University of Copenhagen. Among his many works are A Modern English
Grammar and Analytic Syntax, the latter published by the
University of Chicago Press.

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Editorial Reviews

First published in 1924, this is linguist Jespersen's (1860-1943) critical overview of the full gamut of grammatical concepts, with special attention to discrepancies between grammatical categories and their notional counterparts and the reasons for those discrepancies. With a new introduction and index by James D. McCawley. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226398815
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/1992
  • Series: Chicago Studies in Ethnomusicology Ser.
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 372
  • Sales rank: 991,604
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Preface 11
Abbreviations of Book Titles, etc. 13
Phonetic Symbols 16
I Living Grammar 17
II Systematic Grammar 30
III Systematic Grammar - continued 45
IV Parts of Speech 58
V Substantives and Adjectives 72
VI Parts of Speech - concluded 82
VII The Three Ranks 96
VIII Junction and Nexus 108
IX Various Kinds of News 117
X Nexus Substantives. Final Words on Nexus 133
XI Subject and Predicate 145
XII Object. Active and Passive 157
XIII Case 173
XIV Number 188
XV Number - concluded 202
XVI Person 212
XVII Sex and Gender 226
XVIII Comparison 244
XIX Time and Tense 254
XX Time and Tense - concluded 269
XXI Direct and Indirect Speech 290
XXII Classification of Utterances 301
XXIII Moods 313
XXIV Negation 322
XXV Conclusion 338
Appendix 348
Subject Index 351
Index of Names 359
Index of Languages and Language Families 362
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