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Verb phrases

Both verbs and verb phrases are of type v:

vslash & Vslash
\end{displaymath}\end{avm} \end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (17)

The features LEX, NULL, and VFORM are specific for v. The feature VFORM is used to distinguish finite, infinitive, te-infinitive and past participle verbs (and verb phrases headed by such verbs). The feature LEX is used to distinguish lexical verbs ( ylex) from verbal phrases that are not lexical ( nlex). The feature ylex subsumes two further subtypes basic $\vee$ complex, to distinguish basic and complex lexical verbs. The latter are combinations of a verb and a separable prefix ( aan+komen, arrive) or combinations of a modal verb and a main verb ( wil vertrekken, want to leave). The feature NULL is used to distinguish verbal traces (i.e. verbal signs without phonological content) from other verbal signs. The features SUBJ, SLASH, and VSLASH and NULL are discussed in the section below on sentential syntax.

There are a number of similar rules for combining a verb or a verbal projection with one of its complements. One rule combines a noun phrase complement with a verbal head ( een kaartje kopen, buy a ticket):

{\tt vp\_n...
... \@3 \\
vslash & \@4 \end{displaymath}\end{avm}\end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (18)

Since PPs may either precede or follow the head ( vanuit Leiden vertrekken, vertrekken vanuit Leiden, depart from Leiden), there are two rules to combine such a PP and a verbal head. Finally, there is a rule which combines a verbal head with a te-infinitive ( weigeren naar Groningen te komen, refuse to come to Groningen). The result of combining a verb (or verbal projection) with its complement is a phrase (i.e. the value of LEX on the mother is nlex).

A verbal modifier can be either an adverb, a PP, or a temporal NP. There are unary rules rewriting signs of type modifier into each of these categories. One such rule is the following:

{\tt mod\_...
...n{\it adv}\\ mod & \@1 \end{displaymath}\end{avm}\end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (19)

At the moment, we allow all modifiers to precede or follow the verb ( ik moet morgen in Assen zijn/ in Assen zijn morgen/ morgen zijn in Assen, I must be in Assen tomorrow, ik moet tien uur in Assen zijn/?in Assen zijn tien uur, I must be in Assen at ten o'clock). Therefore, there are two similar rules, vp_v_mod and vp_mod_v, in which a verb combines with a modifier. The first is illustrated here:

{\tt vp\_m...
...ash & \@4 \\ sem & \@5 \end{displaymath}\end{avm}\end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (20)

A special type modifier (with SEM and MOD as only attributes) in combination with three unary rules is used to introduce the various types of verbal modifier. A sample derivation is given in figure 6 (the value of the features SLASH and VSLASH is not shown, but is $\langle$ $\rangle$ on all verbal signs in this derivation).

Figure 6: (dat Rob) in Goes de trein mist (that Rob misses the train in Goes)
\centerline {\pstree[levelsep=*0.5cm,nodesep=3pt]{\Tr[ref=c]{\beg...
...nd{displaymath}\end{avm} }}{

Finally, there are two VP-rules that give rise to `complex' lexical expressions, instead of phrases. Firstly, consider the v_v_v rule:

{\tt v\_v\... & $\langle\rangle$\ \end{displaymath}\end{avm}\end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (21)

The v_v_v rule is used to derive phrases in which a modal verb precedes its infinitival complement ( (dat ik om tien uur) wil vertrekken, that I want to leave at ten o'clock). We adopt an analysis of such constructions in which modals inherit the arguments on SC of the infinitival verb with which they combine. This is illustrated for the root wil (want) in (1).
{\tt wil} ~~$\mapsto$~~
\begin{displaymath}\avmspan{\it v}\\ lex & b...
vform & inf \end{displaymath}$\vert$\ \@1 \> \\

This allows us to derive phrases such as (dat ik) een kaartje wil kopen (that I want to buy a ticket) where the finite modal verb combines with the infinitival verb before combining with the object of kopen (figure 7). Note that it is essential that the modal verb selects a [LEX YLEX] argument in this case, as this excludes the derivation of ungrammatical expressions such as (dat ik) wil een kaartje kopen. The result of combining a modal with an infinitival verb is [LEX COMPLEX] (i.e. subsumed by [LEX YLEX]). This implies that such combinations can be selected by another modal verb (i.e. (dat ik) een kaartje zou willen kopen, that I would like to buy a ticket).

Figure 7: (dat ik) een kaartje wil kopen (that I want to buy a ticket)
\centerline {\pstree[levelsep=*0.5cm,nodesep=3pt]{\Tr[ref=c]{
...) \end{displaymath}\end{avm}

Next, consider the v_part_v rule:

{\tt v\_pa...
...ash & \@4 \\ sem & \@5 \end{displaymath}\end{avm}\end{minipage}\end{displaymath} (22)

The rule v_part_v is used to account for constructions such as (dat ik voor tien uur) aan wil komen (that I want to arrive before ten o'clock). The prefix (or particle) aan of the verb aankomen (arrive) is separated from the root komen in this case. As the root komen specifies that it selects such a particle on its SC-list, the modal verb inherits this specification. The rule v_part_v allows us to combine a verb or verbal complex with a particle. There are two reasons for not using an analogue of the vp_np_v-rule in this case. First, modifiers may not appear in between a particle and the verbal complex selecting this particle ( * (dat ik) aan om tien uur wil komen). This is accounted for by requiring that the head in the rule for particles must be [LEX YLEX] (and combinations of a modifier and a verbal head are always [LEX NLEX]). Second, particles may appear `inside' a verb cluster ( (dat ik voor tien uur) zou aan willen komen, that I would like to arrive before ten o'clock). This implies that the result of combining a particle with a verb cluster must be [LEX YLEX], instead of [LEX NLEX] as specified on the vp_np_v-rule.

It should be obvious that these two rules, and the limited form of argument inheritance we allow (i.e. structure sharing of SC-lists only, and no concatenation of SC-lists), is not sufficient to account for the full range of verb clustering data in Dutch. For one thing, the grammar as it stands cannot handle `inverted' word orders ( (dat ik de trein) halen moet, that I must catch the train), where the infinitive precedes the modal verb. It is rather straightforward to include rules for inverted word orders. A potentially more problematic omission is the fact that perception verbs ( horen, zien) and causative laten, which also introduce verb clusters ( (dat ik) Rob een kaartje laat kopen, that I let Rob buy a ticket), cannot be accounted for. The analysis of this construction in van Noord and Bouma [44] is based on the notion `argument inheritance'. This presupposes the possibility of recursive constraints in syntax (to concatenate SC-lists) as well as rules with an indefinite number of daughters. Both are excluded within the present formalism.

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Next: Subordinate clauses Up: Syntactic Coverage Previous: Prepositional phrases