Writing-system, phonology and even lexicology are fairly well defined categories of linguistic analysis. Grammar, however, is a more nebulous category, and this has left its mark in the confusion which sometimes marks its definition in the literature; for some scholars, grammar refers to the whole range of linguistic activity, with the exception of lexicography, for others, it has a narrower meaning. In this book, the term is used comparatively narrowly, to refer to syntax and morphology. Syntax is concerned with the way in which words combine to form clauses and sentences; morphology-referred to briefly at the beginning of Chapter 6-is concerned with word-form. In other words, grammar is to do with such matters as element-order and inflectional variation.
It will be clear from the previous chapter that there is a fuzzy area between grammar and lexicology, and some areas traditionally considered the realm of grammar have been discussed in the previous chapter (e.g. some aspects of word-formation, the development of gender-systems with reference to pronoun-forms). This fuzziness should not be seen as too problematic; it is worth remembering that our categories of analysis are attempts to order complex things in as economical a way as possible, and it is therefore not surprising that these complex things do not always fit our necessarily clumsy attempts to force them into neat categories. Indeed, it is arguable that one of the characteristic faults of linguistics, especially as practised over the last thirty years or so, has been to try to force the complexities of linguistic behaviour into strictly formal categories which are unable to comprehend the diversity of natural languages.
The reason for the fuzziness of the division between grammar and lexis is that both are carriers of meaning, and it must be expected therefore that meaning is carried differently in different states of language. Such differences are clearly shown in diachronic study. For instance, the Present-Day English clause I had loved, consisting of subject-pronoun, verbal auxiliary and main verb, was expressed in Old English by the clause ic lufoder (literally 'I loved formerly'), to be analysed as consisting of subject-pronoun, main verb and adverb. Both I had loved and ic lufode