6. A "lexicographic portrait" of <i>forgetting </i>

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This study aims to provide a detailed analysis of the English verb ‘forget’. It examines its three main clausal complement types (<i>to</i>-complement, e.g. <i>I forgot to lock the door, that</i>-complement, e.g. <i>I forgot that the door was locked</i>, and<i>wh</i>-complement, e.g. <i>I forgot where I put the key</i>), NP-complements, and several more specialised constructions. The picture which emerges is of a set of interrelated lexicogrammatical constructions, each with a specific meaning, forming a polysemic lexical “family”. Although the study concentrates on English alone, the semantic differences between the various constructions it has identified make it rather clear that one cannot expect a similar range of meanings to “map across” to apparently similar lexemes in other languages. The method of semantic analysis is the Natural Semantic Metalanguage approach.


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