Tags » Morphosyntax

Before it rains again, and often: hypercorrection

I was waiting in line at the boulangerie the other day.  Outside, a nicely dressed woman sat and sipped a coffee while the rain poured down. 1,776 more words

The best map of Paris, and what it tells us about the nature of human language

Spoiler alert: there is no great map of Paris.  There never has been.

Graham Robb maintains that Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette lost their heads in part because of the lack of a good map of Paris. 

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How we're sounding stupid today: noun phrases

Like I always say: it’s the little things that get you.  One of the things that I love about France is that people feel totally free to correct each other’s language, and they certainly feel free to correct mine.  1,120 more words

Compound nouns: why my kid said friendgirl instead of girlfriend

When my kid was about four years old, he went through a period where he switched the orders of certain kinds of words.  It wasn’t random–this happened only with a particular kind of word formed by putting two nouns together.  1,516 more words

Adverbial generics and control in Finnish

Recently I worked with Finnish control (more about this later) and came up with something I thought was interesting. I will share the data in this post without providing anything towards an analysis. 868 more words


It's raining, it's pouring, the old man is snoring: how to talk about rain in English and French

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring,

He went to bed and he bumped his head and he didn’t get up ’til the morning.

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Parallel corpora, collocations, and crazy people on the Métro

One evening I was riding the metro home when a guy got into the car with some used books to sell.  A man sitting across the aisle from me asked to see them.  1,705 more words