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SYNTAX. The study of the rules governing the way words are combined to form SENTENCES If we take any sentence of English, it is clear that the words are arranged in a specific order. To change the word order is to alter the meaning. WORD ORDER.

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slide2
The study of the rules governing the way words are combined to form SENTENCES
  • If we take any sentence of English, it is clear that the words are arranged in a specific order.
  • To change the word order is to alter the meaning.
word order

WORD ORDER

The term ‘word order’ is used to refer to the order of elements in a sentence.

Affirmative sentences:

subject+verb+object+other information.

Someboby stole my car.

Questions:

auxiliary verb+subject+main verb+ other information

Did you speak to him?

inversion

inversion
INVERSION

to express unreal or impossible condition in the past

  • Had I known... (= If I had known...)
  • Had it not been for your foolishness... (= If it hadn’t been for your foolishness...)
inversion1
INVERSION

Emphatic use

  • Little did she know how much work was left.
  • On no account must you sleep at school.
  • Never should you forget who your boss is.
  • Only then can you belong to me.
  • Here comes the sun.
slide6
THE right TERMINOLOGY

 When we consider a sentence, the smallest elements are represented by a word. There are two types of words:

- lexical words such as nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs.

  • function words such as articles, demonstratives, quantifiers, auxiliary verbs, prepositions, conjunctions, pronouns.
look at the following conversation
Look at the following conversation
  • A: Coffee?
  • B: Please.
  • A: Milk? Sugar?
  • B: No milk. One sugar? Thanks.
  • A: Toast?
  • B: No Thanks.
  • A: Juice?
  • B: Mmm.
slide8
Now, can you develop the conversation using sentences? Try to use as much syntax as possible.
  • In pairs...
something like this
Something like this…
  • A: Would you like some of this coffee?
  • B: Yes, I would like some of that coffee, please.
  • A: Do you take milk? Do you take sugar?
  • B: I don’t take milk, but I will take one sugar, thanks.
  • A: Would you like some of this toast?
  • B: I’d prefer not to have any of that toast, thanks.
  • A: Can I offer you some of this juice?
  • B: Yes, I would like some of that juice
slide10
 A sentence can be divided in smaller units and therefore considered at different levels such as:

clause level and phrase level

the clause level
The clause level
  • If you can’t wait any longer, just give her a call.
  • I’ll see you on Friday but all of us will be keeping our fingers crossed.
the phrase level
The phrase level

Nounphrases can containone or more words.

  • A ratheroldwomanwalkedintomy office yesterday.
    • woman = headword
    • a ratherold = pre-modifier
  • His recentbook on global capitalismwas a big success.
    • hisrecent = pre-modifier
    • book = headword
    • on global capitalism = post-modifier
complex noun phrases can include subordinate clauses
Complex noun phrases can include subordinate clauses.
  • The womanI told you about yesterday is coming now.
noun modifiers and number
Noun modifiers and number
  • Many common ideas in English are expressed with a noun + noun compound. In this structure the first noun describes or modifies the second.
    • Milk chocolate (a kind of chocolate)
    • A horse race (a kind of race)
    • The airport bus (a bus that goes to the airport)
  • Noun modifiers remain singular
    • Shoe polish (polish for shoes)
slide15
However we can only say:
    • A feeling of disappointment (NOT a disappointment feeling)
    • Cow’s milk (NOT cow milk)
verb phrases can consist of
a single word main verb

a multiword main verb

one or more auxiliary verbs and a main verb

two main verbs

…listen

…stood up

…has been waiting

…went to speak

Verb phrases can consist of:
preposition phrases are groups of words that begin with a preposition and contain a noun phrase
on

with

Noun phrase

the corner

many additional features

Preposition phrases are groups of words that begin with a preposition and contain a noun phrase.
adjective phrases contain an adjective which may follow one or more other adjectives
Adjective phrases contain an adjective, which may follow one or more other adjectives.
  • not very old
  • really quite glamorous
adverb phrases contain an adverb which may follow one or more other adverbs
Adverb phrases contain an adverb, which may follow one or more other adverbs.
  • rather unwisely
  • only once
adjectives
Adjectives
  • There are twotypesofwordswhich can modifynouns.
  • Classifiersare nouns or adjectivesthattelluswhattypesomethingis (e.g. a kitchentable, a woodentable.)
  • Describersare adjectiveswhichtellusabout the quality/or the writer’s opinion (a largetowel, a nicesofa).
  • Describers come beforeclassifiers (e.g. a largewoodentable)
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Fact adjectives (they give us factual information about age, size, colour etc.)
  • Opinion adjectives (they tell us what somebody thinks of something or somebody)

A nice long summer holiday

when we use more than one fact adjective
When we use more than one fact adjective:

Opinionbeforesizebeforeagebeforeshapebeforecolour.

An interesting old film

A big yellow truck

A long narrow street

the order of adjectives
The order of adjectives
  • 1º opinion (beautiful, important)
  • 2º size (small, tiny)
  • 3º age (old, new)
  • 4º participle (ruined, used)
  • 5º shape (round, flat)
  • 6º colour (red, white)
  • 7º substance (wooden, silky)

I bought a wonderful big new red house.

1 ads
1. Ads

Matching them up

  • Delightful country house hotel
  • Unique four-bedroom lodge set in own grounds
  • Lightweight cross-training shoe
  • Attractive, fun-loving male seeks
  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Slightly balding but fit and active divorcee seeks
  • With private lake frontage and jetty.
  • Independent-minded, mid-twenties partner
  • Sport-loving, energetic companion
  • With dual-density midsole.
  • With private bath and WC.
  • With log fires and oak beams.

KEY: a) 6, b) 1, c) 4, d) 2, e) 5, f) 3

2 adverbs learning the rules by finding examples
2. AdverbsLearning the rules by finding examples

RULES

A) adverbs of manner usually come after the verb

B) sentence adverbs are often the first word in the sentence

C) adverbs of place and adverb phrases usually come after the verb

D) Adverbs of frequency usually come before the main verb

EXAMPLES

  • Unfortunately, Rosie did not get to the station in time.
  • When I was a boy, I would often sit and listen to my parents talking until late at night.
  • A large white mouse sat under the table.
  • James Bond looked carefully round the room.

KEY: A4, B1, C3, D2

slide26
Adv of manner(carefully)=> after the verb
  • Adv of place(here) => after the verb
  • Adv of time(soon)=> beginning or end of sentence
  • Adv of frequency(often) => before the main verb but after to be
  • Adv of degree (hardly) => before the adj or adv they modify
  • Sentence adv (actually)=> usually the first word in the sentence

THE MOST USUAL ORDER IS:

MANNER , PLACE and TIME

the order of multiple pre modifiers
The order of multiple pre-modifiers
  • Adverb + adjective + headword
    • A really hot day
  • Adjective + noun + headword
    • Thick winter coat
  • Adjective + adjective + headword
    • Major industrial nation

(descriptors before classifiers)

    • Clear blue eyes

(colour adjectives follow the other adjectives)

pre modification
Pre-modification
  • Nouns can be modified by subordinate clauses, as in: We visited their house, which is charming. Alternatively, one can write:

We visited their charming house

premodification can be accomplished by many means
Premodification can be accomplished by many means:
  • Adjective. We visited their delightful house.
  • Participles. We visited their decayed house.
  • -s genitive. We visited their fisherman's house.
  • Noun. We visited their country house.
  • Adverbial. We visited their far-away house.
  • Sentence. We visited their pop-down-for-the-weekend house.
premodification of nouns by nouns
Premodification of nouns by nouns
  • The book is on the table in the cornerbecomes
  • The book is onthe corner table (because the table is relatively immobile)
  • whereas
  • The girl in the corner has the book
  • Cannot be changed
try your new knowledge rewrite the following sentences if you think you should
Try your new knowledge! Rewrite the following sentences...if you think you should.
  • 1. The instrument in the lab doesn't work.
  • 2. The professor in the lab doesn't work.
  • 3. The windows in the corner are cracked.
slide32
1. The instrument in the lab doesn't work. The lab instrument doesn't work.
  • 2. The professor in the lab doesn't work.
  • 3. The windows in the corner are cracked. The corner windows are cracked.
3 magazine headlines
3. Magazine headlines

Find and correct the mistakes

  • 1. Freshfruit and vegetables are goodforyou. Eateverydayfiveportions.
  • 2. Tv comictakes on holidayfamousmodel – butwhoisshe?
  • 3. Rock legendinvitestohisweddingfivehundredguests!
  • 4. City councilbuilds up opposite the school a newleisurecentre.
  • 5. Boy, 8, finds in the garden a tarantula.

KEY: 1. Eatfiveportionseveryday. 2. TV comictakesfamousmodel on holiday, 3. Rock legendinvites 500 gueststohiswedding, 4. City councilbuils up a newleasurecentreopposite the school, 5. Boy, 8, finds a tarantula in the garden.

4 choose the most natural word order
4.Choose the most natural word order
  • She quietly was talking on the phone in her office.
  • She was talking on the phone quietly in her office.
  • She was talking quietly in her office on the phone.
  • She was talking quietly on the phone in her office.
  • The new computer system very badly worked at first.
  • The new computer system worked at first very badly.
  • Very badly the new computer system worked at first.
  • The new computer system worked very badly at first.

KEY: D, D

slide35

He organizes always everybody very well.

  • He always organizes everybody very well.
  • He always very well organizes everybody.
  • He always organizes very well everybody.
  • They should repair it tomorrow quickly.
  • They should tomorrow repair it quickly.
  • They should repair it quickly tomorrow.
  • They quickly should repair it tomorrow.
  • KEY: B, C