Re: deponents (Fribergs analysis of EYEIRW)

From: clayton stirling bartholomew (
Date: Thu Apr 23 1998 - 09:09:00 EDT

In section 5.31 (p811-812ff Analytical GNT (1st ed, 1981) the Friberg's
argue that EGEIRW is not a deponent verb because active forms of the verb
exist. They argue that the passive morphological form of a transitive verb can
be used to make that same verb intransitive. The cite this as a *second*
syntactical function which can be marked by the passive morphological form.

Humpty Dumpty would approve of this. The Fribergs are demonstrating that the
syntactical function "make-a-transtitive-verb-intranstive" is an independent
function operating alongside of the function normally associated with the
passive morphological form.

The Friberg's have demonstrated that the question: "What is the syntactical
function (singular) of the passive morphological form" is an improper question
showing an underlying inadequate methodology based on a language model that
does not work. This is not the point the Fribergs are trying to make, but it
is an assumption that they spell out quite explicitly (see page 811 bottom).

Score another point for Humpty Dumpty.

Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

"It would be impossible for a gentleman to know a bounder."

Ford Madox Ford

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