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Alan Libert

It has often proven difficult to classify certain words as adpositions or nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc. This book looks at the distinctions between adpositions, i.e. prepositions and postpositions, and other word classes with respect to a wide range of languages. In particular, it focuses on how these distinctions have been treated by previous authors and the terminology used to describe items on or close to the adpositional border, e.g. pseudo-postpositions and auxiliary nouns. Chapters are devoted to adpositions as opposed to most of the other traditional parts of speech. Among the criteria for (non-)adpositional status brought up are the presence or absence of inflection on putative adpositions and genitive case marking on complements of such words. Definitive conclusions on how to determine whether words are adpositions seem elusive, but some formal criteria, such as absence of inflection, are problematic; possibly a solution will involve a notion of adpositional function.
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Alan Reed Libert

The classification of words in terms of parts of speech is frequently problematic. This book examines the classification of conjunctions and similar words of other classes. It reviews work done from the 19th century to the present on a wide range of languages, including English, German, French, Latin, Ancient Greek, Welsh, Persian, Chinese, Japanese, Ute, and Abun. Most chapters treat conjunctions as opposed to one of the other traditionally recognized parts of speech: nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, adpositions, and interjections. The book’s major focus is on the terminology used to describe words on or near the borders between conjunctions and other parts of speech, such as «deverbal conjunctions», «conjunctional adverbs», «prepositional conjunctions», and «so-called conjunctions».

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Alan Libert and Christo Moskovsky

This book treats various areas of the phonetics, orthography, morphology, syntax, and lexica of artificial languages in an effort to determine what features such languages have in common, and how they differ. Among the topics dealt with are affricates, digraphs, stress, plural formation, demonstratives, prepositional case assignment, color terms, terms for beverages, and terms for meteorological phenomena. Data from many artificial languages, gathered from both primary and secondary sources, are presented in an attempt to give a picture of tendencies among them. The comparative examination of the languages considered in this book demonstrates that artificial languages are relatively uniform in some phonological aspects (e.g. nasals and affricates) while they show a considerable degree of variation in relation to some morphological categories (e.g. demonstratives and plurals). With regard to vocabulary from various lexical fields, in addition to the expected differences among a priori languages, different degrees of uniformity were found among a posteriori and mixed languages with respect to lexemes with particular meanings.
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Christo Moskovsky and Alan Libert

What is the optimal design for an artificial language? This book explores this question at both a ‘macro’ and a ‘micro’ level. An introductory essay presents some fundamental considerations in relation to what the design of an artificial language should be like. The essays that follow examine several basic components of grammar in natural and artificial languages, namely passive, relative, and interrogative constructions, reflexive pronouns, and articles. Drawing data from typologically distinct natural languages, these essays provide a description of the forms and functions that these components can have, and then their counterparts in artificial languages are presented. The artificial languages discussed include Arulo, aUI, the Blue Language, Esperanto, Eurolengo, Hom-idyomo, and Interlingua. The book offers some ideas about how these components of grammar can be integrated in the design of an artificial language.