The Syntax and Semantics of Russian Non-Sentence Adverbials

Per Durst-Andersen, Elena Lorentzen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    For the first time non-sentence adverbials in Russian are analyzed in their totality, i.e., from a lexical, syntactic and propositional-semantic point of view. They are classified, defined and interpreted according to four propositional structures identified in Russian: (1) state descriptions and (2) activity descriptions – both created by simplex verbs; (3) event descriptions and (4) process descriptions – both involving complex verbs. All four structures function as statement models and are used to represent semantic paraphrases of utterances in order to be able to show the exact contribution from an adverbial to the meaning conveyed by the entire utterance. The paraphrases allow us to define the domain of an adverbial, its scope and its subdomain possibilities corresponding to its possible meanings. They also allow us to describe lexical differences, i.e., the way a specific adverb differs from other adverbs belonging to the same synonymous group. It appears that members of various synonymous groups differ from one another with respect to subdomain, i.e., their differences in meaning are treated as being reflexes of originally deep syntactic differences. In this connection the so-called entailment structure of all verbs involving an activity description seems to have a special explanatory power
    Original languageEnglish
    Issue number2
    Pages (from-to)221-260
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Cite this