Existential Sentences in English

1st Edition

Gary L. Milsark

Routledge
Published December 9, 2015
Reference - 272 Pages
ISBN 9781138969285 - CAT# Y208107
Series: Routledge Library Editions: Linguistics

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Summary

In order to bring some minimal amount of order to the chaos that almost inevitably attends the use of the word ‘existential’ in a linguistic investigation, the author reserved the term existential sentence (ES) to designate all and only those English sentences in which there appears an occurrence of the unstressed, non-deictic, ‘existential’ there. Thus the term will be used as a characterisation of a class of syntactic objects, not as a semantic description. With ES sentences including formations such as ‘There were several people talking’ and ‘There ensued a riot’, perhaps nowhere else do we find so clearly displayed the complexity and subtlety of the syntactic and semantic interactions which determine the nature of human language.

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