Article published in:Corpus-based Approaches to Construction Grammar
Edited by Jiyoung Yoon and Stefan Th. Gries
[Constructional Approaches to Language 19] 2016
► pp. 145–164
A corpus-based study of infinitival and sentential complement constructions in Spanish
This corpus-based study examines Spanish infinitival and sentential complement constructions. 561 infinitival and 795 sentential complements retrieved from the AnCora corpus were subjected to a Distinctive Collexeme Analysis (Gries and Stefanowitsch, 2004) that identified the verbs distinctively associated with either complementation. The results suggest that the two are in fact distinct constructions (Goldberg, 1995, 2006): the infinitival construction attracts verbs denoting desire, whereas the sentential construction attracts verbs denoting communication and mental activity. The results furthermore lend credence to usage-based constructionist approaches: verbs fall on a continuum of constructional preferences from which consistent semantic groups emerge. We close with a brief discussion of how grammaticalization processes may account for the constructional preferences of specific verbs.
Published online: 08 September 2016
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