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Syntax as a part of grammar

Syntax is a part of grammar which deals with structure, classification & combinability of sentences and phrases. |Phrases are combinations of at least 2 notional words. Function of phrases is nominative, meaning is polynomination because a phrase represents at least 2 objects. The main feature of the sentence is predication which is based on proposition. Predication is an actualized proposition. Supra-proposemic level combines separate sentences forming a textual unit. The sentences are combined by the process called cumulation. Cumulation is based on the connection of thoughts in the communicative progress. If there are no connective thoughts, it’s not a text. |Syntax which is the grammatical teaching of the sentence gives analysis of the sentence proper, its constituent parts (phrases) & the language units the sentences form.


23. Basic syntactic notions: syntactic unit, syntactic form, syntactic meaning, syntactic function, syntactic relations, syntactic position, syntactic valence

Syntactic units are phrase, sentence & text. Syntactic form of the word is the form which is determined by its combinability. It displays close connection between morphology & syntax. Syntactic meaning is based on the syntactical-distributional classification of words worked out by American scholars Leonard Bloomfield, William Harris and Charles Fries. According to them there are 4 main syntactic meanings: of N, V, A, D. |Words outside these positions are treated as function words of different syntactic values. |Function words are divided into 3 groups: 1) specifiers of notional words: N determiners (articles), V determiners (modals), functional modifiers and specifiers of D (other adverbs which are in subordinate relation to them: better – much(far) better); 2) interpositional elements: prepositions & conjunctions; 3) words referring to the sentence as a whole: question words (what, who, how), inducement words (please), attention getting words (hey, hello), words of affirmation and negation (yes & no), sentence introducers – formal subjects (it, there). Synt. function is synt. properties of words of 2 kinds: 1) method of combining with other words in the sentence; 2) function in the sentence. |Verbs may combine with following nouns (to write letters), adverbs (to write legibly) or with preceeding nouns. Verbs are usually predicates. |Nouns may combine with preceeding adjectives, following verbs. Nouns may be subject, object, attribute, complement (predicative). Synt. relations are those of syntagmatic nature, i.e. they are immediate, linear relations between parts of the syntactic unit. Syntagmas may be predicative (subject-predicate), objective (V+object), attributive, adverbial (D/A/V+its adverbial modifier): to run quickly – adverbial syntagma. Synt. position is the position of a word in the syntagma. There exist only 2 types of synt. position: 1) pre-position (defining word stands before headword); 2) post-position (-//- after headword). Very often the position of the word in the syntagma defines its meaning. martial arts – pre-position to N; court martial – post-position |In pre-position we may have up to 8 A. there is a specific order: opinion, size, age, form, colour, origin, material, what for. Synt.valency is combinability of the word within a phrase with other words. Usually it’s about subordinate combination we have a headword and its adjunct. |Originally only V-s have valence but today this term may be applied to any part of speech. Scholars give following types of valence: 1) according to the direction (left-hand & right-hand): She can leave can is a 2-valence verb subject (she) is left-hand and infinitive (leave) – right-hand; 2) according to the nature: obligatory & notional. |The obligatory valence must necessarily be realized for the sake of gram. & semantic completeness of the phrase: They must go home – must has obligatory valences for the subject I and notional verb go, both are obligatory. |Auxiliary verbs, modals and link verbs open obligatory valences. |The optional valence isn’t necessarily realized for the sake of gram. & lexical completeness & depends on the general meaning of the sentence, f/ex, sentence expressed by a transitive V may or may not open valences for objects or adv. modifiers: She is reading VS She is reading a story to herself.


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