Chapter 4. Clause structure, complements, and adjuncts. A clause consists of a subject and a clause The head of the predicate is the verb (predicator) The Predicate consists of the verb (predicator) as the head and possibly other dependents. Dependents of the predicate (VP): A. Complements
Clause structure, complements, and adjuncts
The head of the predicate is the verb (predicator)
The Predicate consists of the verb (predicator) as the head and possibly other dependents.
Dependents of the predicate (VP): A. Complements
Complements are a type of dependent that are licensed by the head verb.
Licensing is related to what is permitted in a clause. It has to do with grammar and semantics.
Sue used the cheese. Sue used.* object obligatory
Sue ate the cheese. Sue ate. object optional
Sue disappeared the cheese Sue disappearedobjected not permitted
Every canonical clause contains a subject. However, certain kinds of subjects are licensed by verbs. Since licensing applies to subjects, they could be considered a type of complement.
Whether we finish early depends on the length of the semester.
Whether we finish early ruined my day.
Subjects are licensed by the verb, so they are a type of complement. Since they are located outside the predicate, they are considered external complements.
Sarah played soccer.
Nominative: I he she we they
Accusative: me him her us them
She hit him.
She drinks coffee
Are you studying translation?
Do you drink coffee?
1. With some verbs, the object is obligatory “licensed by the verb”.
He wants coffee. “Obligatory for the verb “wants”.
2. Typically can be the subject in the passive form of the sentence.
Ed informed the manager. “Active”.
The manager was informed by Ed. “passive”
Ed told him.
Ed told quickly the manager.* ungrammatical
Indrect obj Direct obj
What is the difference between direct objects and indirect objects?
Sue gave the photo to Max. pp complement
Verbs that license two objects also license a structure with a direct object and PP complement.
Sue gave the phototo Max.
Direct Obj PP comp
We bought shoes for them.
PP complements cannot be considered objects because they cannot be replaced by an accusative pronoun, and they do not correspond to the subject in passive clauses.
Sue gave the photo him* ungrammatical
To Max the photo was given by Sue. ungrammatical
Syntactic properties of the predicative complements
Adjunct do not have to be licensed by the verbs, and they are less closely dependent on the verb. Their occurrence is less dependent on grammatical rules.
Adjuncts cover both modifiers and supplements
How can we identify adjuncts?
You can omit it from the sentence and the sentence is still grammatical.
Adjuncts come as:
Manner He drove her quite recklessly.
Place They have breakfast in bed
Time I saw her last week.
Duration We lived in London for five years.
Frequency She calls her mother every Sunday.
Degree We very much enjoyed your last novel.
Purpose I checked all the doors to make sure they were shut.
Result It rained all day with the result that they couldn’t work.
Condition If it rained, the match will be postponed.
Consession Although he’s rich, he lives very simply.
They are playing happily outside. Happily, they were playing outside.
i.e.: they are happy while playing i.e.: the speaker is happy they are playing
Supplements are set apart intonationally and are marked by punctuation.