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Adjective
Университет Российской академии образования



Реферат
по теоретической грамматике
на тему: “Adjective”



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иностранных языков
311
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Москва, 2001
The adjective expresses the categorial semantics of property of a
substance. It means that each adjective used in tile text presupposes
relation to some noun the property of whose referent it denotes, such as
its material, colour, dimensions, position, state, and other
characteristics both permanent and temporary. It follows from this that,
unlike nouns, adjectives do not possess a full nominative value. Indeed,
words like long, hospitable, fragrant cannot effect any self-dependent
nominations; as units of informative sequences they exist only in
collocations showing what is long, who is hospitable, what is fragrant.
The semantically bound character of the adjective is emphasized in
English by the use of the prop-substitute one in the absence of the
notional head-noun of the phrase. E.g.:
I don't want a yellow balloon, let me have the green
one over there.

On the other hand, if the adjective is placed in a nominatively self-
dependent position, this leads to its substantivization. E.g.: Outside it
was a beautiful day, and the sun tinged the snow with red. Cf.: The sun
tinged the snow with the red colour.
Adjectives are distinguished by a specific combinability with nouns,
which they modify, if not accompanied by adjuncts, usually in pre-position,
and occasionally in postposition; by a combinability with link-verbs, both
functional and notional; by a combinability with modifying adverbs.
In the sentence the adjective performs the functions of an attribute
and a predicative. Of the two, the more specific function of the adjective
is that of an attribute, since the function of a predicative can be
performed by the noun as well. There is, though, a profound difference
between the predicative uses of the adjective and the noun which is
determined by their native categorial features. Namely, the predicative
adjective expresses some attributive property of its noun-referent, whereas
the predicative noun expresses various substantival characteristics of its
referent, such as its identification or classification of different types.
This can be shown on examples analysed by definitional and transformational
procedures. Cf.:
You talk to people as if they were a group. —> You talk to people as
if they formed a group. Quite obviously, he was a friend. —> His behaviour
was like that of a friend.
Cf., as against the above:

I will be silent as a grave. —> I will be like a silent grave. Walker felt
healthy. —> Walker felt a healthy man. It was sensational. —> That fact was
a sensational fact.

When used as predicatives or post-positional attributes, a
considerable number of adjectives, in addition to the general combinability
characteristics of the whole class, are distinguished by a complementive
combinability with nouns. The complement-expansions of adjectives are
effected by means of prepositions. E.g. fond of, jealous of, curious of,
suspicious of; angry with, sick with, serious about, certain about, happy
about; grateful to, thankful to, etc. Many such adjectival collocations
render essentially verbal meanings and some of them have direct or indirect
parallels among verbs. Cf.: be fond of—love, like; be envious of — envy; be
angry with — resent; be mad for, about - covet; be thankful to — thank.
Alongside of other complementive relations expressed with the help of
prepositions and corresponding to direct and prepositional object-relations
of verbs, some of these adjectives may render relations of addressee. Cf.:
grateful to, indebted to, partial to, useful for
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