the Adjective and the Adverb

Document Sample
the Adjective and the Adverb Powered By Docstoc
					Lecture 2.5. Notional Parts of
Speech: “Words of Property”
the Adjective and the Adverb

§ 1. The Adjective
1.1. Part-of-speech Characteristics
1.2. Traditional Semantic Subclasses +The Statives +The
1.3. Degrees of Comparison
§ 2. The Adverb
2.1. Part-of-speech Characteristics
2.2. Semantic Subclasses
2.3. Degrees of Comparison
   § 1. The Adjective
   1.1. Part-of-speech Characteristics
  Semantics: the categorial meaning of property of a
  substance such as material, colour, dimensions, position,
  state, etc. As compared with Nouns has reduced nominative
  Form: -ful (hopeful), -less (flawless), -ish (bluish), -ous
  (famous), -ive (decorative), -ic (basic); un-(unprecedented),
  in- (inaccurate), pre- (premature) + a- (to form statives).
  Grammatical forms of degrees of comparison.
  Combinability and Function:
Syntactic functions of an attribute and a predicative.
Combinability with nouns as pre- and postpositional attributes;
               with functional and notional link-verbs;
               with modifying adverbs;
+ a complementive combinability with dependent nouns
  effected by means of prepositions (object-like or adressee-
  like nouns).
fond of, jealous of, curious of, indebted to, useful for –
  render essentially verbal meanings!!
be envious of = envy
be angry with = resent
1.2. Traditional Semantic Subclasses:
Qualitative and Relative Adjectives
Relative Adjectives express properties which are determined by the direct
   relation of the substance to some other substance.
wood — a wooden hut;
mathematics — mathematical precision;
history — a historical event.

Qualitative Adjectives denote various qualities which admit of a
    quantitative estimation, measuring.
an awkward situation — a very awkward situation;
a difficult task — too difficult a task;
an enthusiastic reception — rather an enthusiastic reception.
    qualities incompatible with the idea of degrees of comparison:
extinct, immobile, deaf, final, fixed
    relative properties which allow such degrees:
a mediaeval approach—rather a mediaeval approach — a far more
    mediaeval approach;
of a military design — of a less military design — of a more military
a grammatical topic — a purely grammatical topic — the most
    grammatical of the suggested topics.
Evaluative and Specificative Uses of

One and the same adjective, irrespective of
  its being basically "relative" or
  "qualitative", can be used either in the
  evaluative function (give some
  qualitative evaluation) or in the
  specificative function (point out its
  corresponding native property).
the adjective “wooden” is basically
  relative, but when used in the
  broader meaning "expressionless" or
  "awkward" it acquires an evaluative
  force and, consequently, can
  presuppose a greater or lesser
  degree: the most wooden face ever.
 The Stative as a Special Subclass
The Stative is not universally recognized as a separate part of
    speech. It is built by the prefix and the root of a word.
awake, applause, ablaze, afraid
Ильиш: It differs from the adjective from the point of view of
    meaning, function and form.
1. It's meaning is that of the passing state a person or a thing happens to
    be in (not that of a quality).
2. Its form is unchangeable.
3. Usually the Stative follows a link verb and occasionally a noun (man
    alive). It can follow an adverb (fast asleep). Its function is that of
    the predicative.
Conclusion: It is its own part of speech
Бархударов и Блох disagree applying same principles:
1. statives express properties of nouns.
2. a changeable form. It has degrees of comparison, though they are not
    synthetical but analytical.
The one most aware of the situation.
3. The Functions of the Stative: the predicative and an attribute, though
    a post positional attribute (man alive)
Conclusion: the Stative belongs to the class of adjectives. It makes up
    a subclass of its own within the class of adjectives.
The “Adjectivids“ –
partially substantivised Adjectives
Adjectives get easily substantivised by conversion.
There are well-established substantives:
a relative, a white, a dear
and new coinages:
a new high in heat and humidity
long-life learnables
+ a group of adjectives with hybrid lexico-
  grammatical features called "adjectivids“
  which have both nounal and adjectival
  pluralia tantum subgroup (the English, the
  rich, the unemployed, the uninitiated, etc. =
  sets of people (personal multitudes)
  singularia tantum subgroup (the invisible, the
  abstract, the tangible, etc. = abstract ideas of
  various types and connotations)
   1.3. Grammatical Categories:
   Degrees of Comparison
The category of comparison is potentially represented in the
   whole class of adjectives (not only qualitative!).
The categorial meaning: the quantitative characteristic of the
   quality of a nounal referent (a relative evaluation of the
   quantity of a quality).
Three forms-three meanings (two-level opposition
   generalised into a gradual opposition.):
   Positive degree (no comparison, but inherent semantics
   of (in)equality, realised in combinations like: The remark
   was as bitter as could be.
   The superiority degrees:
   the comparative degree form with the meaning of
   restricted superiority based on the comparison of two
   elements only
   the superlative degree form with the meaning of
   unrestricted superiority.
Types of forms: the synthetic forms in -er and -(e)st
 and the analytical forms (the auxiliaries more and most).
?More than TWO or NO Analytical
Opinion: The combinations of more/most with the basic form of the
    adjective are free syntactic constructions because
1) the more/most-combinations are semantically analogous to
    combinations with less/least (the "negative degrees of
2) the most- combination, unlike the synthetic superlative, can take
    the indefinite article, expressing not the superlative, but the
    elative meaning, i.e. a high, not the highest degree of quality
    (a degraded superlative).
a most significant attack (most being a kind of a lexical intensifier,
    while the whole phrase is excluded from a comparison)
1)  less/least combination though not in complementary distribution with
    synthetic degrees express meanings opposite to meanings of
    comparative and superlative degrees and are of the same
    categorial status (comparison) = "reverse comparison"
2)  Synthetic comparison forms occasionally are used in the elative
    function (He made a last lame effort to delay the experiment)
    + Elative function is not a proof of non-grammatical character of the
    most- combinations as it is a different idiomatic combination, specific
    for English. Ironically in Russian mostly synthetic degrees are used
    in the elative function: слушали с живейшим интересом;
    повторялась скучнейшая история; попал в глупейшее
Lexemic Groups of Non-comparables
Groups of adjectives with comparative
    sememic elements in their semantic
    structures, excluded from category of
1) "moderating qualifiers“ - adjectives of
    indefinitely moderated quality:
whitish, tepid (тепловатый), half-
    ironical, semi-detached
2) "extreme qualifiers“/"extremals“ -
    adjectives expressing the highest degree
    (used with the definite article, but admit
    elative function:
The ultimate outcome of the talks was
The final decision has not yet been made
  § 2. The Adverb
  2.1. Part-of-speech Characteristics
   Semantics: the categorial meaning of property of a non-
   substantive referent; the least self-dependent of all the four
   notional parts of speech (includes a great number of
   semantically weakened words intermediate between notional and
   functional lexemes of pronominal nature).
   Form: simple adverbs are few with functional pronominal
   semantics: here, there, now, then, so, quite, why, how,
   where, when; Derived: the basic and only productive
   adverbial suffix -ly (slowly, tiredly, rightly, firstly); -ways
   (sideways, crossways), -wise (clockwise), -ward(s)
   (homewards, seawards, afterwards); compound and
   composite: sometimes, nowhere, anyhow; at least, at most, at
   last; to and fro; + "adverbids“ (adjective-stem conversives)
   Combinability and Function:
combinability with verbs, adjectives and words of adverbial nature
+ can also refer to whole situations as situation-determinants (ex.
   in combinations with nouns:
Our vigil overnight was rewarded by good news.
The world today presents a picture radically different from
   what it was before the Second World War).
    2.2. Semantic Subclasses
Traditional Classification: qualitative, quantitative and circumstantial
Blokh’s variant based on type of nominative value:
1.1. Qualitative adverbs
1) Adverbs of full nominative value express immediate, inherently non-graded
    qualities of actions and other qualities, typically in –ly:
bitterly, plainly
2) Quantitative semi-functional adverbs (words of degree) express quality
    measure, or gradational evaluation of qualities of 9 types such as (see the
    "intensifiers“=adverbs of high degree: very, quite, entirely, utterly,
    highly, greatly
1.2. “Orientative“(deictic) adverbs
    of place (homeward, eastward, near, far, outside, ashore)
    of time (today, tomorrow, already, never, shortly, recently, seldom, late)
2.1. Genuine quantitative adverbs directly related to numerals and having
    pronominal nature:
twice, thrice, four times, twofold, threefold, manyfold
2.2. Circumstantial adverbs of time, place, manner, cause, consequence
    used as syntactic connectives and question-forming functionals (now,
    here, when, where, so, thus, how, why).
   Peculiar groups
1) Peculiar pairs of root adverbs with a parallel form in –ly
   differentiated in meaning and connotations:
fast, late, hard, high, close, loud, tight, etc.
to work hard — hardly to work at all;
2) preposition-adverb-like elements in post-position to
   the “phrasal” verbs:
to bring about — to cause to happen
to bring up — to call attention to
Possible interpretations of their status:
   a variety of adverbs (H. Palmer, A. Smirnitsky);
   "post-positives“ - preposition-like functional words of semi-
   morphemic nature (I. Anichkov, N. Amosova, M. Blokh);
   "adverbial word-morphemes“ - prefix-like suffixes similar to
   the German separable prefixes (Y.Zhluktenko);
   a special set of lexical elements functionally intermediate
   between words and morphemes (B. A. Ilyish; B. S.
   Khaimovich and B. I. Rogovskaya).
See оn for more
3) "fluctuant conversives“ - few adverbs with
  the non-specific -ly originally in-built in the
  converted adjective:
daily, weekly, lively, timely, etc.
4) adverbs that positionally interchange with
  prepositions and conjunctive words:
before, after, round, within, etc.
never before — never before our meeting;
somewhere round — round the corner;
not to be found within — within a minute
2.3. Degrees of Comparison
Both qualitative and orientative adverbs can
  be used in evaluative or specificative
  function and, therefore, have degrees of
quickly — quicker — quickest — less
  quickly — least quickly
ashore — more ashore — most ashore
  — less ashore — least ashore
Same issue of number of degrees with
  adjectives applies to adverbs as well as
  the problem of elative superlative.
    Controversy over highly productive
    -ly derivational pattern
Each qualitative adjective has a parallel adverb in –ly, the latter
    hardly differs from the former in anything but syntactic function.
A.I. Smirnitsky: the qualitative adverbs in -ly are adjectives of
    specific combinability!!! Based on the facts that:
1) regularity of formation
2) no lexical change – similarity of qualitative nature and evaluative
3) the near-identity of the adjectival and adverbial grammatical
    categories of comparison
4) the derivational features of other adverbs are absolutely devoid of
    uniformity and make up minor non-productive derivational
5) the bulk of other notional qualitative adverbs have –ly correlatives
    (both of similar and dissimilar meanings and connotations).
M.Blokh: Since the English lexicon does distinguish adjectives
    and adverbs and they still have different syntactic
    functions – they are different parts of speech!
But adverbs in -ly should be looked upon as the standard type of the
    English adverb as a whole.
Tasks for Seminar
Topics for Discussion
1.  General description of the adjective as a part of speech
2.  Subclasses of the adjective (qualitative and relative
    adjectives) and their relation to the category of comparison
3.  “Category of state” words, their linguistic description and
    relations to adjectives.
4.  Grammatical category of comparison: controversy over
    types and number of forms; the elative comparison
5.  Other (controversial) subclasses of adjectives.
6.  General description of the adverb as a part of speech.
7.  Derivational types of adverbs.
8.  Lexico-grammatic subcategorization of adverbs as a
9.  –ly adverbs status.

Practical Assignments
Test Questions
See Key Terms
Key Terms
1. relative and qualitative adjectives
2. evaluative and specificative function of adj. and
3. statives
4. adjectivids
5. reverse (or negative) comparison
6. the elative superlative
7. non-comparables
8. adverbids
9. fluctuant conversives
The “Adverbids“=adverbial substantives

 adverb-stem conversives
 The pale moon looked at me from
 By now Sophie must have received
  the letter and very soon we shall
  hear from her.
 The departure of the delegation is
  planned for later this week.
Nine Types of Degree Adverbs
1. "intensifiers“=adverbs of high degree: very, quite,
   entirely, utterly, highly, greatly
2. adverbs of excessive degree: too, awfully,
   tremendously, dreadfully, terrifically;
3. adverbs of unexpected degree: surprisingly,
   astonishingly, amazingly;
4. adverbs of moderate degree: fairly, comparatively,
   relatively, moderately, rather;
5. adverbs of low degree: slightly, a little, a bit;
6. adverbs of approximate degree: almost, nearly;
7. adverbs of optimal degree: enough, sufficiently,
8. adverbs of inadequate degree: unbearably,
9. adverbs of under-degree: hardly, scarcely

Shared By: