Parts of Speech: Descriptive tools, theoretical constructs
  • ISSN 0378-4177
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9978
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This paper emphasises the explanatory possibilities of a parts-of-speech theory in which the notions of differentiation, flexibility, and rigidity are not perceived as mutually exclusive typological paths, but as potentially compatible grammatical strategies. The type of analysis such a theory makes possible is first applied to Spanish quantifiers and subsequently extended to degree words expressing intensification in modern Romance languages. The paper also pays attention to the formal mechanisms associated with the expression of degree words. One of the most significant conclusions is that degree words classified as differentiated adverbs tend to function as modifiers of modifiers. The modification of predicates and that of terms (especially, mass nouns) are roles usually played by flexible modifiers.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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