Analyzing the Grammar of English

By Richard V. Teschner; Eston E. Evans | Go to book overview

Appendix

Commonly Used Matrix Verbs and the Complementation Patterns They Co-occur With
This lengthy but not exhaustive appendix lists seventy-five English verbs that are commonly used in the main clause of our subordinate clause or tenseless complement sentences. The appendix gives the nine complementation patterns discussed in this chapter and indicates which matrix verbs co-occur (are employed) with which pattern(s). For example, advise in the main clause co-occurs with either a that-clause complement (I advise that she sell) or with an infinitive complement plus raising to object (I advise her to sell).Excluded from this appendix are all matrix plus complementation patterns that struck us as unnatural, stilted, obsolete, obsolescent, or possibly so. (We use the [?] symbol to mark those patterns that strike us as possibly unnatural, obsolete, and so forth.) By employing the complement verb phrase sing throughout, we seek uniformity of content to the greatest extent possible, yet the equally compelling need to achieve naturalness of expression has given rise to minor variations in tense or length on several occasions. It should also be noted that given the complexity of English complementation, not all native speakers will agree on the grammaticality of all matrix plus complementation patterns presented here, and some may actually conclude that to their own ears a particular pattern sounds unnatural, obsolete, etc.The verbs that are commonly used in the main clauses of compound sentences appear in boldface type at the start of each entry, thus: admit, advise, ask, attempt,… Numbered sentences follow each matrix verb; the numbers correspond to the numbers of the subordination patterns that the matrix verbs can co-occur with, with the numbered sentences exemplifying each of the subordinate clause patterns with which the particular matrix verb co-occurs. (While some matrix verbs can co-occur with just one or two subordinate clause patterns and others with as many as six or seven, there is no matrix verb that co-occurs with all nine patterns.) The numbers illustrating each pattern range from 1 to 9; explained and exemplified below are each of the subordination patterns that the matrix verbs can co-occur with:
1. 1. The complement is a subordinate that-clause, with the clause's verb in the subjunctive. (Example: I prefer that she sing lullabies. In this example, the matrix verb is prefer while the subordinate that-clause's verb is sing. We know that sing is in the subjunctive mode because it lacks the 3.sg.pres. tense /z/ morpheme.)

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