Lexical patterning in a construction grammar
The effect of lexical co-occurrence patterns on the inflectional variation in Dutch attributive adjectives
This paper compares two measures that quantify lexical preference patterns in the area of Construction Grammar, namely, collostructions and (construction-internal) collocations (as conceived by Stefan Th. Gries and Anatol Stefanowitsch). Starting from a case study, inflectional variation in Dutch attributive adjectives, two diagnostic calculations will be set up to analyse to what extent both association measures identify lexical preferences in this construction. In particular, the lexical patterns yielded by the collostructional and the collocational association measures will be evaluated as a factor which determines the selection of the inflectional alternatives of the Dutch attributive adjective. We will argue that, at least in some cases, constructions are more strongly characterised by the (construction-internal) collocations that instantiate them than by the single items that instantiate them (as defined in collostructions). Consequently, the syntagmatic axis should become a constitutive dimension in a comprehensive Construction Grammar model.
Keywords: adjectival inflection, variational linguistics, collostructions, collocations, Construction Grammar
Published online: 11 June 2009
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