By Noel Burton-Roberts
This hugely winning textual content has lengthy been thought of the normal creation to the sensible research of English sentence constitution. It covers key techniques resembling constituency, classification and services, and likewise utilises tree diagrams all through to assist the reader visualise the constitution of sentences.
In this fourth variation, Analysing Sentences has been completely revised and now includes a fresh better half site with extra actions and workouts for college students and a solution booklet for the in-text routines for professors. the additional actions at the web site supply scholars perform in determining syntactic phenomena in working textual content and may support to deepen figuring out of this subject.
Accessible and transparent, this e-book is definitely the right textbook for readers coming to this subject for the 1st time. that includes many in-text, end-of-chapter and additional workouts, it truly is appropriate for self-directed learn in addition to to be used as center interpreting on classes.
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Additional info for Analysing sentences: an introduction to English syntax
It is a mutual (two-way) dependency – S and P are both obligatory. S precedes P. Modifier~Head. This is a one-way dependency: modifiers depend on heads. Modifiers are optional (omissible). Some modifiers precede and some follow the heads they modify. 37 CHAPTER 2 SENTENCE STRUCTURE: FUNCTIONS Head~Complement. A two-way dependency. Complements are obligatory, needed to complete the meaning of the phrase. The head generally precedes its complement. Heads. The head is the obligatory centre of its phrase.
In the absence of rather (or any other modifier of dubious), on the other hand, dubious and jokes may well form a constituent, as they do in the phrase two dubious jokes. PHRASE-a  two PHRASE-b dubious jokes ■ The head~complement relation We have now looked at the two-way function/mutual dependency of subject and predicate and several examples of the one-way function/dependency of modifier and head. Now look again at the phrase beside a stream (from the sentence Old Sam sunbathed beside a stream) in the light of the discussion in this chapter.
In a given phrase, there can only be one head. But in , two and rather are represented as sisters, forming a phrase. The fact that this supposed phrase (*two rather) doesn’t have a well-defined meaning – and couldn’t be the answer to any question – is thus quite predictable. Notice that, since constituents function in respect of their sister constituents, rather in  is completely cut off from the element (dubious) it wants to modify.  is marginally better, but still wrong. Before reading further, decide for yourself in the light of the preceding discussion exactly in what respect it’s better than , and exactly in what respect it’s still not as good as .
Analysing sentences: an introduction to English syntax by Noel Burton-Roberts