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Re: Simple English

From:Gerald Koenig <jlk@...>
Date:Tuesday, December 14, 1999, 2:54
>From: Jeffrey Henning '<Jeffrey@...>' >Subject: Re: Simple English > >Gerald Koenig <jlk@...> comunu: >> Jack Durst built the NGL core grammar with the Ogden set. >> Anna Wierzbicka finds 89 words/concepts basic to all languages and builds >> a simplified universal grammar with them.
Jeffrey ad tok:
>Do you have a list of them? What are the core verbs? I've been wondering a >lot about minimal verb sets lately... >
Jeffrey--- Here is an excerpt I just typed up for you from the table of contents of Anna Wierzbicka's _Semantics, Primes and Universals_ Oxford 1996. "Old primitives" are the first ones she established. "In the last two years, the system of semantic primitives has been radically expanded, from 37 to as many as 55." Page 73. I believe that she and her collaborators are now talking about 89 universal concepts. I'll see if there are more verbs in the larger less attested set later. Jerry A. OLD PRIMITIVES 2. Substantives: I, YOU, SOMEONE, SOMETHING, PEOPLE 3. Determiners: THIS, THE SAME, OTHER 4. Quantifiers: ONE, TWO, MANY (MUCH), ALL 5. Mental Predicates: THINK, KNOW, WANT, FEEL 6. Speech: SAY 7. Actions and Events: DO and HAPPEN 8. Evaluators: GOOD and BAD 9. Descriptors: BIG and SMALL 10. Time: WHEN, BEFORE, AFTER 11. Space: WHERE, UNDER, ABOVE 12. Partonomy and Taxonomy: PART (OF) and KIND (OF) 13. Metapredicates: NOT, CAN, VERY 14. Interclausal Linkers: IF, BECAUSE, LIKE B. NEW PRIMITIVES 16. Determiners and Quantifiers: SOME and MORE 17. Mental Predicates: SEE and HEAR 18. Movement, Existence, Life: MOVE, THERE IS, LIVE 19. Space: FAR and NEAR, SIDE, INSIDE, HERE 20. Time: A LONG TIME, A SHORT TIME, NOW 21. Imagination and Possibility: IF...WOULD, CAN, MAYBE 22. WORD