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#1 A. Smith

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 11:28 AM

First off, let me say that I love the syntax modules! I love them more and more as I learn to use them better. Thank you for your development and research time . . I know this isn't easy. Now, onto the question. I'm looking at, say Luke 1, and have noticed something (see the image below). Take, for example Ἐπειδήπερ in vs 1, labeled an adjunct (a fine name, by the way!). This label, though, belongs not only to the word but to the whole phrase, which, I think, ends at λόγου in vs 2. This is a sound understanding of the grammar and makes sense from the display of the trees. However, when I hover over the red 'a', only vs 2 is highlighted. Shouldn't the whole phrase be highlighted, beginning at vs 1? Am I misreading the trees or misunderstanding what an adjunct is? Is this a function of Accordance only being able to highlight the words from the verse that the actual label is in? If that's the case, it would be great if this could be fixed. Being able to see the whole phrase marked out at a glance would be a great aid!

Another example is the independent clause ('n') near the bottom in my pic below. Forgive my ignorance but where does the predicate clause (the 'p' just below the 'n') stop? Do they both cover from vs 1 to vs 4? That doesn't make sense to me. It would make sense to me that the larger predicate phrase would be inside the independent clause, not identical with it. How can I tell from the chart which is which? If I'm understanding this right, it seems like it would be helpful if there was a large dark blue (or whatever color that is which you use for independent clauses) arc spanning the length of the clause.

One last question (for now). In the phrase καὶ ὑπηρέται γενόμενοι τοῦ λόγου of vs 2 there is an arch indicating a predicate phrase/clause. There is also a purple arch looping underneath. I presume this indicates a clause (from the light purple color). Should there not be an 'l' on this arch, as there is on other clause arches?

Thanks very much and please fell free to nail me to the wall for linguistic ignorance :blink:

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Anthony Smith
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#2 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 11:49 AM

First off, let me say that I love the syntax modules! I love them more and more as I learn to use them better. Thank you for your development and research time . . I know this isn't easy. Now, onto the question. I'm looking at, say Luke 1, and have noticed something (see the image below). Take, for example Ἐπειδήπερ in vs 1, labeled an adjunct (a fine name, by the way!). This label, though, belongs not only to the word but to the whole phrase, which, I think, ends at λόγου in vs 2. This is a sound understanding of the grammar and makes sense from the display of the trees. However, when I hover over the red 'a', only vs 2 is highlighted. Shouldn't the whole phrase be highlighted, beginning at vs 1? Am I misreading the trees or misunderstanding what an adjunct is? Is this a function of Accordance only being able to highlight the words from the verse that the actual label is in? If that's the case, it would be great if this could be fixed. Being able to see the whole phrase marked out at a glance would be a great aid!

Another example is the independent clause ('n') near the bottom in my pic below. Forgive my ignorance but where does the predicate clause (the 'p' just below the 'n') stop? Do they both cover from vs 1 to vs 4? That doesn't make sense to me. It would make sense to me that the larger predicate phrase would be inside the independent clause, not identical with it. How can I tell from the chart which is which? If I'm understanding this right, it seems like it would be helpful if there was a large dark blue (or whatever color that is which you use for independent clauses) arc spanning the length of the clause.

One last question (for now). In the phrase καὶ ὑπηρέται γενόμενοι τοῦ λόγου of vs 2 there is an arch indicating a predicate phrase/clause. There is also a purple arch looping underneath. I presume this indicates a clause (from the light purple color). Should there not be an 'l' on this arch, as there is on other clause arches?

Thanks very much and please fell free to nail me to the wall for linguistic ignorance :blink:


Good questions.

First, you've found an imperfect in the highlighting. You are quite right that the entirety of vv. 1-2 should be highlighted when you hover over that first A node. And you are also quite correct that it has to do with the verse boundaries. It's on the list of things to address, but down a bit (after further tweaks in the searching functions).

Second, the way it has been tagged (I'll let Marco address the specifics, if they are an issue) is that vv. 1-4 are a unit, with the verb ἔδοξε at the beginning of v. 3 as the main verb. The line between the Na and the P indicates that the P is nested within the N. What's missing in this tree (and I don't have the underlying tagged text to check on this) is a syntactic subject, the absence of which makes it look like the N and P are the same. Either this is a tree-drawing mistake, or there's something missing in the syntax. Since κἀμοὶ is taken as a verbal adjunct (which looks good to me), I would expect a null Subject (ě) in the tree to indicate the covert 1cs syntactic subject.

Finally, under-arcs indicate the connection of a discontinuous constituent (i.e,. a constituent in which the parts are broken up by something else). What's funny here is that the arc is purple but it's connecting two blue Cs. Odd.

Again, excellent questions -- keep them coming since they either 1) help us explain things, 2) help us fix things, or 3) both!
Associate Professor, Ancient Hebrew and Northwest Semitic Languages
Dept. of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
The University of Toronto
blog: ancienthebrewgrammar.wordpress.com

#3 Marco V. Fabbri

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 12:52 PM

First off, let me say that I love the syntax modules! I love them more and more as I learn to use them better. Thank you for your development and research time . . I know this isn't easy. Now, onto the question. I'm looking at, say Luke 1, and have noticed something (see the image below). Take, for example Ἐπειδήπερ in vs 1, labeled an adjunct (a fine name, by the way!). This label, though, belongs not only to the word but to the whole phrase, which, I think, ends at λόγου in vs 2. This is a sound understanding of the grammar and makes sense from the display of the trees. However, when I hover over the red 'a', only vs 2 is highlighted. Shouldn't the whole phrase be highlighted, beginning at vs 1? Am I misreading the trees or misunderstanding what an adjunct is? Is this a function of Accordance only being able to highlight the words from the verse that the actual label is in? If that's the case, it would be great if this could be fixed. Being able to see the whole phrase marked out at a glance would be a great aid!


I agree, vv. 1-2 should both be highlighted. Also I expected them to be. As Robert said, this looks like a display problem that will need to be fixed.

Another example is the independent clause ('n') near the bottom in my pic below. Forgive my ignorance but where does the predicate clause (the 'p' just below the 'n') stop? Do they both cover from vs 1 to vs 4? That doesn't make sense to me. It would make sense to me that the larger predicate phrase would be inside the independent clause, not identical with it. How can I tell from the chart which is which? If I'm understanding this right, it seems like it would be helpful if there was a large dark blue (or whatever color that is which you use for independent clauses) arc spanning the length of the clause.


This was my mistake, and not a display issue. Of course, the overarching predicate should be shorter. The last constituent should be ἀκριβῶς. Then we should have an overarching subject, that consists of an accusative + infinitive clause and its subordinates. I have fixed this for the next update release.

One last question (for now). In the phrase καὶ ὑπηρέται γενόμενοι τοῦ λόγου of vs 2 there is an arch indicating a predicate phrase/clause. There is also a purple arch looping underneath. I presume this indicates a clause (from the light purple color). Should there not be an 'l' on this arch, as there is on other clause arches?


The arches are a way to join split elements, whatever they are. The color is slightly lighter than the split element. In this case, the split element is not a clause, but rather a complement. The idea is to suggest that the genitive τοῦ λόγου refers back to αὐτόπται καὶ ὑπηρέται, "jumping" γενόμενοι.

I hope this helps. It certainly helped me, so you are welcome.
Marco Valerio Fabbri
P. UniversitÓ della S. Croce
Rome, Italy

#4 A. Smith

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 02:48 PM

Robert, and especially, Marco,

Thank you so much for your quick and thorough replies! You have definitely helped me better understand how the charts work. Marco, your explanation of the under-arches is perfect. Can I ask this: Outside of a personal question such as I posed in this forum, how might one learn this information? Is there a syntax read-me being prepared? Either way, I'm glad to have a forum where I can ask such questions and I'm amazed that the scholars who wrote the database are actually answering my question! I'm glad, too, that I have been able to help you tweak the charts. I simply cannot imagine how much time goes into a project like this. A few little missteps such as these are nothing and don't make me think any less of you or the project. Where is perfection this side of heaven, anyway? Thank you both again.
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Anthony Smith
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#5 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 03:58 PM

Can I ask this: Outside of a personal question such as I posed in this forum, how might one learn this information? Is there a syntax read-me being prepared?



Yes ... sigh. I'm working on a basic manual. It's simply taking longer than I had hoped. <_<
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#6 Marco V. Fabbri

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 04:02 PM

Anthony, thank you for your understanding and encouraging words. We amount of work required is actually important. I hope that with time we will be able to polish the modules.
Marco Valerio Fabbri
P. UniversitÓ della S. Croce
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#7 A. Smith

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 04:43 PM

No rush, my friends. I'd rather the modules over the introduction anyway. I can always ask questions here and get a quick response!

Robert, I was talking with Marco regarding the syntax theory behind the database and he suggested I talk with you. I have read your writings in this regard and was wondering if you might suggest a few books that you found helpful in forming your theoretical model for the project. I understand linguistics in broad strokes, but to paraphrase Rod Decker, I am but a woeful traveler in the frightening land of Linguistica! Any books you would recommend would be greatly appreciated. I post here rather than pm because I'm sure I'm not the only one who would like such resources. Thanks again for all your help.
Anthony Smith
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#8 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 05:09 PM

No rush, my friends. I'd rather the modules over the introduction anyway. I can always ask questions here and get a quick response!

Robert, I was talking with Marco regarding the syntax theory behind the database and he suggested I talk with you. I have read your writings in this regard and was wondering if you might suggest a few books that you found helpful in forming your theoretical model for the project. I understand linguistics in broad strokes, but to paraphrase Rod Decker, I am but a woeful traveler in the frightening land of Linguistica! Any books you would recommend would be greatly appreciated. I post here rather than pm because I'm sure I'm not the only one who would like such resources. Thanks again for all your help.


Anthony,

I'll start this generally and then get to the tagging project at the end.
For anyone who has not had a formal introduction to linguistics, I always recommend starting with this book:

Fromkin, Victoria, Robert Rodman, and Nina Hyams. 2006. An Introduction to Language. 8th ed. New York: Wadsworth Publishing.


This is a standard intro to linguistics textbook at the university level. David Crystal's dictionary is an invaluable starting-point:

Crystal, David. 2008. A Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics. 6th ed. Oxford: Blackwell.


After that, it becomes trickier, because the material becomes theory-specific. Unless you already know which linguistic theory you'd like to read about, I recommend reading a bit about the history of the field in the last 100 years or so. Often, a good history will add the philosophical context to the various "fights" between the proponents of competing theories. I often have my incoming grad students read these two volumes:

Sampson, Geoffrey. 1980. Schools of Linguistics. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
Harris, Randy Allen. 1993. The Linguistic Wars. New York: Oxford University Press.


Sampson's is a more general work (and older) and he is not friendly towards Chomskyan linguistics. Harris's volume is more focused on the advent and history of generative linguistics in the 2nd half of the 20th century; Harris is friendlier to Chomsky's theories, although Chomsky himself comes off pretty badly at some points.

Both Oxford and Blackwell have "handbook" series that also provide intermediate-level introductions to various theories and components of grammar.

On the project specifically, I'll make another reply soon.

Edited by Robert Holmstedt, 21 December 2010 - 05:14 PM.

Associate Professor, Ancient Hebrew and Northwest Semitic Languages
Dept. of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
The University of Toronto
blog: ancienthebrewgrammar.wordpress.com

#9 A. Smith

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 05:18 PM

Thanks, Robert. I was thinking more specifically of bookse introducing the generative minimalist approach you took for the database and especially those that would perhaps compare and contrast this to the more typical (in NT studies, anyway) functional and/or systemic approach.
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#10 James Tucker

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 05:33 PM

Thanks, Robert. I was thinking more specifically of bookse introducing the generative minimalist approach you took for the database and especially those that would perhaps compare and contrast this to the more typical (in NT studies, anyway) functional and/or systemic approach.


Anthony,

I am not nearly the scholar that Dr. Holmstedt is, nor have the acumen in linguistics he possesses. However, I do have a couple of suggestions for you. I have benefited greatly from the Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics series, of which Andrew Radford is the author for Minimalist Syntax. I have yet to finish this work, but it is a progressive work. I would also suggest that you read Chomsky himself! I've read several of his works and have learned a great deal, especially as Harris (ref. above by Dr. Holmstedt) engages his work in light of Bloomfieldian phonemics. Harris' is a great read, too—very witty and poignant. His own rhetoric is evident on every page. I also recently purchased Syntax: A Generative Introduction by Andrew Carnie. I have not read this source as of yet, but have thumbed through it. My initial impression is that it is more hands on (exercises, etc.) than other books I have read on the subject.

Hope this helps!

James M. Tucker


Edited by James T, 21 December 2010 - 06:08 PM.


#11 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 21 December 2010 - 06:10 PM

Thanks, Robert. I was thinking more specifically of bookse introducing the generative minimalist approach you took for the database and especially those that would perhaps compare and contrast this to the more typical (in NT studies, anyway) functional and/or systemic approach.


Oy -- this is the harder part of your question (which I did recognize, but wanted a bit more time to think it over).

Radford's and Carnie's textbooks are both good introductions to generative syntax. Radford's presents just minimalism, where Carnie includes other generative frameworks (HPSG, LFG, etc.). Cedric Boeckx's introduction to minimalism is also quite readable:

Boeckx, Cedric. 2006. Linguistic Minimalism: Origins, Concepts, Methods, and Aims. Oxford: Oxford Univeristy Press.


And the articles in Baltin and Collins, especially the nice overview of phrase structure by Fukui are helpful:

Baltin, Mark, and Chris Collins, eds. 2001. The Handbook of Contemporary Syntactic Theory. Blackwell Handbooks in Linguistics. Oxford: Blackwell.
Fukui, Naoki. 2001. Phrase Structure. Pp. 374-406 in The Handbook of Contemporary Syntactic Theory, ed. M. Baltin and C. Collins. Oxford: Blackwell.


The real two-fold challenge of your question, though, is this: 1) it is hard for me to identify specific resources that influenced the tagging scheme because I've been reading in formal syntax for nearly 15 years; and 2) there has been so little generative work on NT Greek that the contrastive works don't even exist. So, I'll simply list the 5 or so most influential works on my own approach over the last 10+ years (with the caveat that my "principles" essay -- on my blog and cross-refenced here in the Forum -- makes it clear that our tagging project is not a full-blown minimalist product):

All works by N. Chomsky

Botha, Rudolf P. 1989. Challenging Chomsky: The Generative Garden Game. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
McGilvray, James A. 1999. Chomsky: Language, Mind, and Politics. Cambridge: Blackwell.

Most works by Frederick Newmeyer, but especially:

Newmeyer, Frederick J. 1998. Language Form and Language Function. Language, speech, and communication. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
———. 2003. Grammar is Grammar and Usage is Usage. Language 79 (4):682-707.
———. 2004. Typological Evidence and Universal Grammar. Studies in Language 28 (3):527-48.
———. 2005. Possible and Probable Languages: A Generative Perspective on Linguistic Typology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


The Hebrew-specific work by Edit Doron and Ur Shlonsky.

Again, let me know if you have any more specific questions.

Edited by Robert Holmstedt, 21 December 2010 - 06:11 PM.

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#12 A. Smith

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Posted 22 December 2010 - 09:28 AM

Robert and James,

Thank you both. Your lists are exactly what I was looking for. I appreciate the time the three of you have given to teaching me here. Thanks again,
Anthony Smith
Southwest Christian Church
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