[b-greek] universal syntax

From: Wayne Leman (wleman@mcn.net)
Date: Thu Oct 26 2000 - 17:29:34 EDT

> Mark Beatty wrote [snipped]:
> > Briefly, in response to Daniel L. Christiansen on using other languages,
> > is partially right about syntax not applying to other languages-but this
> > depends on what syntax you are using. It appears, by Christiansen's own
> > confession, that his syntax does not apply to other languages, and
> > not even to Modern Greek. My syntactic paradigm does, and if exceptions
> > be found it is a significant blow to the validity of my syntactic
> > Consider Christiansen's examples:
> spoken/written constituents, I suppose it would be possible to construct a
> which bridges languages. However, that would be a syntax of thought, and
not of the
> spoken/written word. There, we are in an entirely different discussion.

So true, Daniel.

> At least, that's my opinion . . . Daniel

There is no such thing as universal syntax. Noam Chomsky speaks of universal
grammar (and, for him, grammar is different from syntax) but those of us who
work on languages other than English sometimes wonder if there is even such
a thing as universal grammar (and Chomsky is *not* speaking of a syntax
which can be applied to different languages; he is speaking of a linguistic
model and notational system which might account for the grammatical forms of
all (?) languages).

Every language has its own unique syntax. Even Indo-European languages,
including Greek and English, have different syntaxes.

Wayne Leman
Cheyenne linguist
Bible translation website: http://bibletranslation.lookscool.com/

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