I lately lost a preposition

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Wed Jan 30 13:58:42 UTC 2008

On Jan 29, 2008, at 5:33 PM, sagehen wrote:

> More prepositions lost; this time on The World (BBC/WGBH) news
> program. Brit
> newsreader used the expression "agree a sthg" twice,  rendering what
> I'd
> have thought an intransitive verb transitive. A minute or two later,
> the
> American newsreader used "agree" with /to/ or /with/  or /on/  (I
> don't
> remember which) as we usually do. Is this prepositionless "agree"
> now the
> norm in Britain?

googled 1/30/08 (all British sources):

Iraqi leaders finally agree a draft constitution - World - Times ...
Aug 22, 2005 ... A draft of Iraq's constitution has been agreed and
includes the key word.

Reuters AlertNet - UN climate talks agree blueprint for action
Many countries hope that Bali will agree a two-year roadmap to
negotiate a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, the main UN plan for
fighting warming until 2012 ...

Trades Union Congress - TUC urges Government to agree new deal for ...
... (Monday) calling on Gordon Brown to break a longstanding European
deadlock and agree a new deal for agency workers at a crucial EU
meeting on Wednesday.

International: SFA agree Burley compensation - Setanta Sports
All that was left for The SFA to do was agree a compensation package
with Southampton for Burley, something they have now done. ...

(cf. earlier discussions here of transitivization by dropping a
preposition: ankle, abscond, etc.)

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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