[Lingtyp] A list of 50 basic sentences

Yunfan Lai lai at shh.mpg.de
Sat May 8 13:34:00 UTC 2021

Hi Ian,

Frankly, I do not think that 50 sentences are sufficient. Sometimes using this sort of lists may be misleading. For example, among most others, the passive constructions in Gyalrongic languages are generally unelicitable. Showing the native speaker a passive sentence in English may more often than not lead to a translation with an active construction in Gyalrongic. Gyalrongic does have passive morphology, but can almost exclusively be found in natural narratives.



> On 8. May 2021, at 15:24, Denys T. <denys.teptiuk at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi, 
> Just a random thought: you have inferential, mirative, but what about reportative? 
> And I am not sure that I understand correctly, but what is honorific about 'My mother ate fish'? ‘Mother’ over ‘mom’? I don’t know what to offer instead, but I would think about changing this one.
> Best wishes, 
> Denys 
>> On 8. May 2021, at 16:08, JOO, Ian [Student] <ian.joo at connect.polyu.hk <mailto:ian.joo at connect.polyu.hk>> wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> I am trying to make a list of 50 basic sentential meanings.
>> The goal is to make parallel corpora of different languages based on this list of sentences.
>> Each sentence on the list serves to check whether a language has a given grammatical feature, and if so, in what form the language expresses it.
>> When creating each sentence, I tried to limit its vocabulary to basic words that are found in most languages, avoiding culture-specific words.
>> I would appreciate it if you could have a look at the attached file and advise what I should add/remove/modify.
>> From Hong Kong,
>> Ian
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