the spread of adjective-licensed "of"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Wed Jan 23 15:37:04 UTC 2008

"...people saying ... that my work was merely descriptive and
therefore of no significance."

Arnold, I know the feeling.


"Arnold M. Zwicky" <zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU> wrote:
  ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: "Arnold M. Zwicky"
Subject: Re: the spread of adjective-licensed "of"

On Jan 22, 2008, at 5:08 PM, James Harbeck wrote:

> I've just come upon a brief analysis of this structure in English and
> other Germanic languages at

just to point out that this is a topic we pick up about once a year,
back for some years, always starting over as if no one had ever
thought or written about it before.

most recently in 9-10 june 2007, starting with a query from joe
salmons, with a fairly long response from me about some of the
literature and about variability in judgments on the variants, and
then further discussion.

i have no interest in rehashing any of this, possibly ever anywhere,
but certainly not on ADS-L.

as a further twist, my 1995 paper on the subject (available on my
website) elicited a certain amount of correspondence from people
saying (a) that my modest couching of the description in terms of
constructions made the paper incomprehensible to theoretical
syntacticians, or (b) that my work was merely descriptive and
therefore of no significance.

arnold, back into the shadows

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