Re: "attributive" participle

From: Jonathan Robie (
Date: Wed Oct 15 1997 - 09:51:30 EDT

At 08:41 AM 10/15/97 -0500, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
>At 7:56 AM -0500 10/15/97, Jonathan Robie wrote:
>>There are two meanings to the word "attributive" that make sense here:
>>1. The "attributive" participle describes the attributes of a noun.
>>2. The "attributive" participle occurs in attributive position.
>>Which of these is the reason for the name?
>Neither seems to me a very good reason for using such a term; who uses it?

Both Smyth and Robertson use it. And I'm wondering why...

>It strikes me as more confusing than helpful. I'd rather talk about an
>adjectival as opposed to an adverbial participle and then say that an
>adjectival participle may be used either like an attributive adjective or
>like a substantive adjective, e.g. hO PISTEUWN ANHR (attribute adjective);
>hO PISTEUWN (substantive usage of an adjectival participle).
Yes, that really is clearer.


Jonathan Robie
POET Software, 3207 Gibson Road, Durham, N.C., 27703

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