UCL Working Papers in Linguistics 11 (1999)

The syntax and semantics of causative verbs


In this paper I present a Word Grammar analysis of the syntax and semantics of the causative/inchoative alternation. The analysis makes crucial use of the relational network that characterises Word Grammar which provides for the description and explanation of the behaviour of regularly alternating verbs like BREAK as well as exceptionally non-alternating verbs such as VANISH and CUT. I also address the difference between inherently causative alternating verbs such as COLLECT and inherently inchoative alternating verbs such as GROW.

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