Volume 23, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1387-6759
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9897
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Cross-linguistic research has brought extensive evidence on how languages differ in their categorization of actions and events, pointing out the differences in the semantic categories they establish, their boundaries and their degree of granularity with respect to the variety of events they refer to. Verbs describing breaking events vary in terms of generality or specificity of the action description (e.g., breaking or snapping a twig) or salience of specific semantic components characterising the event (e.g., being associated with violent destruction) and the same event can be construed differently within the same language (e.g., ). In this article we set out to explore the semantic boundaries of verbs describing breaking events within and between languages. We propose a new methodology combining corpora and a video ontology, using verb pairs generally regarded as translation equivalents in bilingual dictionaries. The study contributes to research on semantic categorization and verbs correspondences between Italian and English.


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