Volume 41, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0378-4177
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9978
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The corpus-based analysis of Teop word classes demonstrates that lexical multifunctionality is not incompatible with the grammatical distinction between verbs, nouns, adjectives and adverbs, because this distinction does not manifest itself in their syntactic functions of heads of phrases, but in the kinds of modifier the words can combine with. Consequently, the Teop word class system falsifies all word class typologies that assume that a formal differentiation of event, object and property words presupposes a distinctive distribution across the head positions of determiner-marked referential expressions and TAM-marked predicative expressions. In addition to the multifunctionality of verbs, nouns and adjectives, the Teop lexicon shows regular patterns of conversion. The paper concludes with an assessment of the results and the limitations of the corpus-based approach and suggests four topics for further research: (1) the development of elicitation methods to supplement corpus-based analyses; (2) a typology of formally distinguished phrase types; (3) regular patterns of conversion across languages; and (4) possessive comparative constructions.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): conversion; modification; multifuntionality; phrase types; word classes
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