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Monday, September 3, 2012

Grammar as a Machine Which generates Sentences

To sum up,you can imagine grammar as a machine or a device for creating sentences.It is in the mind of speaker and represents his or her knowledge of the language.It contains rules for creating simple sentences at the deep level which are then transformed by transformational rules into more complex sentences.

           Now let us see what kind of arguments can be advanced in favor of their existence.One of these arguments is that in some sentences movement seems to have occurred,  i.e it appears that some constituents have been moved from their original places.Let us take an example :

(11) I put the book on the table

Now, "put" is a verb which is followed by an NP,that is,something which can be put somewhere.This NP is followed by a PP (prepositional Phrase),beginning with in,on,inside,outside, and put,In other words,for a verb like "put" the lexicon must specify what constituents follow it. by

put = V (followed ) NP,PP

Thus if we omit either the NP or the PP after "put",we will produce a grammatically ill-formed sentence.For example :

               (12) * I put on the table. (Here the NP following the V has been left out.

(13)* I put on the table (Here PP following the NP after the V has been left out )

Now consider the following sentence:

(14) What did I put [---] on the table?

In this sentences, "put" is not followed by an NP.However,we just started that "put" is subcategorized in the lexicon as being a verb followed by an NP and a PP.These subcategorized facts are constant.Thus,what has happened is that the NP after put has fact that it has moved away must mean that there was an original position for it to move away from.Thus,we assume that there is a deep level at which it was there,and that certains T-rules have the sentence.In short,rules move parts of phrases from one place to another in sentences.We will try to understand this in more detail later..!

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