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Phonetics and Phonology / Re: Egyptolinguistic Phonology Question
« Last post by giselberga on June 05, 2018, 11:35:16 AM »
Egyptian hieroglyphs is like Chinese characters
But Egyptian hieroglyph can know how to pronounce word
According to Earlier Egyptian vowel system in wikipedia, vowel had /a/, /u/, /i/, i like arabic and vowels are always short in unstressed syllables (⟨tpj⟩ = */taˈpij/ 'first') and long in open stressed syllables.
subsequently, vowel added /e/, /o/
Morphosyntax / Re: Quantifier scope
« Last post by binumal on June 05, 2018, 11:09:09 AM »
One more question,if you wont mind. See the sentence below

  1. There was a statue   in every corner of the building- Here the narrow scope reading of 'a statue' is most natural ,Isnt it? But see the following sentence
  2. There was a book in every library I visited - Here the most natural reading is is that in which 'a book' gets wide scope reading. - Does that  mean the ambiguity is essentially semantic?- That is, syntax give the choices from which semantics pick the most apt meaning.
Language-specific analysis / Persian alphabet kaf and Arabic alphabet kaf
« Last post by giselberga on June 05, 2018, 11:03:28 AM »
Why is different between Persian kaf(ک) and Arabic kaf(ك)?

Persian kaf

Arabic kaf

Arabic kaf and Persian kaf probounce /k/
But isolated letter ‘kaf’ is different
Why is isolated letter ‘kaf’ different in Persian scripts and Arabic scripts?
Computational Linguistics / Re: Why is typing Vietnamese difficult?
« Last post by panini on June 05, 2018, 08:49:38 AM »
Vietnamese is actually pretty trivial to type, once you install a Vietnamese keyboard program and learn a half-dozen general conventions, which puts it on a par with French or Norwegian. Compared to Arabic, Hindi, Hangul or Chinese, Vietnamese is simple.
English / Re: English
« Last post by Daniel on June 05, 2018, 12:38:24 AM »
From the rules announcement here:'languages'-(forum-policy)/
The main purpose of this forum is not for students of languages, but rather for linguistically-oriented discussion of features in specific languages. It may occasionally be used by us, as linguists, when we're studying languages, but don't expect this to replace the other language-learning websites out there.

Your repeated posting of this same question have been removed from elsewhere on this forum.

This is not an English learning forum. There are many other places on the internet where you can go for that. This forum is for Linguistics, which is the scientific study of how language works. Not to learn to speak languages, but to understand their structure. If you have questions about Linguistics, you can ask them. If not, please find a different website to ask questions about learning English or proofreading your sentences.

Also, always start a new thread rather than replying to someone else's discussion.


[Note: one of the threads you replied to is here:
The difference between your question and the one there is that binumal was asking about those sentences for scientific analysis, to do research about the difference between English and other languages, not to learn to write in English. That might not be clear out of context, but that's an example of what this forum is for, not just normal proofreading. That's what "grammaticality" means-- it's a technical term.]
The only definitely "correct" answer is: check your textbook (or ask your instructor). Anything else we suggest here might mean you get the question "wrong" on your homework. Why? Because there are different theories out there, even different versions of X-bar theory for some of these details.

X-bar itself doesn't really do well with movement. You need something else to explain that, and that's where this will differ in different textbooks.

If you're using simple X-bar, then you don't really need movement at all. Just stick it on the beginning of a sentence under an X' node and parallel an X' node (where all adjuncts go), in this case probably S'. (Assuming S is the top of your tree as in simple versions of X-bar, before adding in things like TP or CP.)

But if you want to add movement, then most approaches to drawing trees literally add arrows showing the original location (or sometimes an indexed trace of some sort though more often for nouns rather than prepositional phrases), such that there is an adjunct position lower in the tree, and then also higher, where it is moved. The exact details will depend on which iteration/version of the Generative Syntax you're using.

There's no "simple" way to address movement in syntax trees, and therefore also no widespread standard for doing so. The details depend on the theory. See your book, or instructor. You can very easily look up examples of this type in published articles, other textbooks, on Wikipedia, etc., but if they differ from what your textbook/teacher expects, you'll probably get the question "wrong". I'm assuming you're doing this for a class, of course. If not, then compare a few textbooks to see the different options. Or go to some of the original sources, which can be more technical and difficult, but also worthwhile to find the original arguments and see what they were thinking at the time.
Computational Linguistics / Re: Why is typing Vietnamese difficult?
« Last post by Daniel on June 05, 2018, 12:24:26 AM »
I don't understand your question.

Different languages have different writing systems. Almost all of the the decisions about that predate computers by decades or much longer. The only answer can be "because of tradition".

Of course the first computers most easily encoded the English alphabet because they were made by English speakers. But with Unicode and other technologies, almost any language can be used on a computer now. There is no real problem, except sometimes software compatibility. And so now the answer is "because instead of changing the languages or their writing system, the computers are now more advanced and change to encode them better."
Language-specific analysis / Re: What is difference between creole and pidgin?
« Last post by Daniel on June 05, 2018, 12:20:54 AM »
Here's an attempt at an answer:
--Pidgins are basic contact forms that come about due to speakers of two languages who do not understand each other making up a simpler mixed system to speak to each other. They have no native speakers, and they are not full "languages".
--Creoles are languages with mixed origins, but they are full languages, with native speaker populations.
Some would say that a pidgin becomes a creole once it has native speakers (children who use and fill in the language). That's somewhat controversial, however, because some scholars now believe that the simple pidgin>creole development is not an accurate reflection of how some (or maybe many) creoles developed. But that's the general idea, and the traditional understanding.

The more complicated answer is that there isn't a strict distinction between the two, and the terms refer to idealizations of language types that don't always match the real world exactly. And to further complicated things, all of these can exist at the same time in the same location. Nigerian Pidgin ( or is a very interesting example, where today there are some native speakers so it can be considered a creole, but most of the speakers are adults who speak it as a second language, therefore preserving its status as a second language (and pidgin, at least for those speakers!), all the while being in constant contact with standard English in formal situations. Another complicated example is Tok Pisin which used to be a pidgin but probably can now qualify as a creole despite the name being associated with the word "pidgin". In fact, many pidgins are now shifting toward creole status. Note that this is another distinction, that pidgins tend to have relatively short lifespans, while creoles may be spoken indefinitely by one generation after the next.

Short answer: it's complicated. Basically, pidgins are limited in some ways, do not have native speakers, etc., while creoles also have mixed origins but are 'real' languages in the relevant sense.

There are many more places to read more about these issues online, so just take this reply as a starting point.
Morphosyntax / Re: Quantifier scope
« Last post by binumal on June 03, 2018, 11:45:10 AM »

In Malayalam, is it possible to force the reading in the right context?

"Almost everyone in the United States is monolingual, but because they have so many diverse language classes at MIT, ALMOST EVERYONE AT MIT knows two (or more) languages!"
If the narrow scope reading is still not possible, that's very strange to my English native speaker ears, which makes Malayalam interesting.
If that makes the narrow scope reading possible (in context), then that means English and Malayalam are proper opposites in this regard, because in English the default is strongly the narrow scope but that can be shifted pragmatically. (Maybe it's not as strong a bias as in Malayalam, I don't know. But I'd say that the average English speaker wouldn't really be aware of that reading unless it was in the context of explaining the logic of ambiguity, or in very specific pragmatic contexts.)
Yes, It is possible to force the narrow scope reading( by adding  a  word say ethenkilum(roughly  any of ) . But ,still the most natural reading of the sentence is that in which 2 languages get wide scope reading.
I am currently looking at the use of the Greek article ho in Hellenistic Greek.

There have been a lot of discussions in the literature about its use and non-use in the New Testament and how it effects the salience of elements in the discourse.
Some authors have applied a general rule that a (proper) noun may be introduced in the discourse without an article and then subsequent uses will use it. In order to modify discourse prominence, the absence of the article with a proper noun still activated in the discourse is said to add salience to that referent. I am wondering whether there has been any work done on processing effort involved in the use / non-use of (definite) articles associated with proper nouns?

From a relevance theory perspective it seems that it would be common and reasonable to introduce a discourse participant without the article. Using Christopher Lucas' terminology based on Hawkins' work, that entity is then capable of being represented as a mutually manifest P-Set which explains the use of the article with it subsequently. Lucas' approach also explains instances where an entity is introduced with the article and no prior reference.

In many switches between two activated discourse participants a post-positive marker of  narrative progression (de) is preceded by the article - (ho de), the article thus being used almost pronominally. It seems to me that this common device from an RT perspective must be due to a desire to reduce processing effort in decoding extra linguistic information that would be involved if the proper noun was used each time.

In some instances the switch back to an already activated participant in the discourse will be done with a proper noun and an article; from an RT perspective I would presume that this would thus highlight the salience of that participant by incurring an extra processing cost.
Greek can also switch to an already active discourse participant with a full noun phrase without the article. Again, I am wondering whether this would incur extra processing due to the lack of signal that the article provides that this is a member of an already activated P-Set in the hearer's mental representation. Without the article, the hearer would thus need to seek to assign a reference to the concept triggered by the proper noun and it would be the same. Asking the hearer to go to this effort is mitigated I am thinking by the fact that they are highly accessible to the hearer and therefore it is not an unreasonable device to use.
Again, I am wondering all of this from an experimental pragmatics perspective, namely whether there is any work on neural activation across the use of articles with discourse participants or other tests of processing effort.

I am pretty new to linguistics so apologies if my terminology is all over the place. I have also horrendously over-simplified the literature on the article... literally books have been written about its use and non-use and I can't accurately represent it all here
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