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Re: Questions Concerning Grammar

From:Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Date:Tuesday, August 3, 2004, 20:49
En réponse à william drewery :

> From what I understand, Biblical Hebrew, especially >in the Pentateuch, uses similar "thematic" devices. I >think (I could easily be wrong) that a topic-comment >structure is found in many polysynthetic languages. I >know that many of them have very grammaticalized >notions of "focus". Is that the same thing?
AFAIK, topic and focus are different things. The topic is what the sentence is about, and is often omitted if it has already been introduced. The focus is the most important part of the sentence, i.e. what the sentence has to say, and by definition cannot be omitted. But people are often confused because those words are close synonyms in "normal" language, and even linguists sometimes confuse them :) . Christophe Grandsire. You need a straight mind to invent a twisted conlang.