Scale structure in Delineation semantics

Heather Burnett

in Gradability in Natural Language

Published in print December 2016 | ISBN: 9780198724797
Published online January 2017 | e-ISBN: 9780191792298 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in Semantics and Pragmatics

Scale structure in Delineation semantics

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  • Semantics
  • Grammar, Syntax and Morphology


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This chapter presents both new and previously discussed data associated with the scale structure of members of the four principle classes of adjectives that are studied in this work. Following much previous research, it is argued that the adjectives in each of the classes given are associated with scales that have different properties. This chapter demonstrates that the association of an adjective with a scale with the correct properties is already predicted by the analysis presented in Chapter 4, set within the Del-TCS architecture. In other words, it is argued that, once there is an (independently necessary) analysis of context sensitivity and vagueness in the adjectival domain, an analysis of adjectival scale structure comes “for free.”

Keywords: scale structure; modification; inference patterns; ordering; comparison

Chapter.  5586 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Semantics ; Grammar, Syntax and Morphology

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