The Verb in Contemporary English: Theory and Description

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This collection of essays sheds new light on the verb in English. The authors illustrate that verbs can only be properly understood if studied from both a theoretical and descriptive perspective. In part one, the authors explore topics such as the terminological problems of classification, verb complementation, the semantics and pragmatics of verbs and verbal combinations, and the notions of tense, aspect, voice and modality. In part two, computer corpora is used to study the form, development and usage of the verb in different varieties of English.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a book for those interested in the structure and history of verbs in English. It is a varied presentation of current theoretical and descriptive work in English grammar and provides some valuable insights." Eduardo D. Faingold, Canadian Journal of Linguistics
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521026543
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/31/2006
  • Pages: 328
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Table of Contents

List of contributors
1 Introduction: theoretical and descriptive approaches to the study of the verb in English 1
2 Grammatical relations in English 27
3 Competence without Comp? 40
4 On the semantics of the object 54
5 Secondary predicates in English 75
6 The English perfect as a secondary past tense 102
7 'How does this sentence interpret?' The semantics of English mediopassives 123
8 The expression of Root and Epistemic Possibility in English 145
9 Find and want: a corpus-based case study in verb complementation 159
10 Indeterminacy between Noun Phrases and Adjective Phrases as complements of the English verb 183
11 Having a look at the expanded predicate 203
12 'This scheme is badly needed': some aspects of verb-adverb combinations 218
13 That and zero complementisers in Late Modern English: exploring ARCHER from 1650-1990 241
14 Changing patterns of complementation, and concomitant grammaticalisation, of the verb help in present-day British English 258
15 Verbs in public and private speaking 273
16 Some remarks on comment clauses 290
Index of names 303
Subject index 307
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