query: prenominal and postnominal adjectives in Romance

Tue Apr 21 16:18:37 UTC 1998

Dear colleagues,

Perhaps another kind of contrast between prenominal
and postnominal modifiers is found in Riau Indonesian.

Both orders are allowed; however, postnominal order is
unmarked, while prenominal order is usually assigned
a comparative or superlative interpretation.  (Note
however that these are just statistical tendencies,
albeit strong ones.)

Of course, this contrast is semantically related to
those that Bingfu discusses, as superlatives are
inherently definite, and even comparatives contain
an element of definiteness (eg. "a bigger house" is
"the biggest house" in a set containing the house
in question and one or more houses functioning as
standards of comparison).

David Gil
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia

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