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The present paper argues that there is ample corpus evidence of statistical preemption for learners to make use of. In the case of argument structure constructions, a verb i is preempted from appearing in a construction A, CxA, if and only if the following probability is high: P(CxB|context that...
In this article we tackle the issue of diachronic variation in constructional semantics through an exploration of the (recent) semantic history of the well-established English ditransitive or double object argument structure construction. Starting from the assumption that schematic syntactic...
This paper focuses on English yes-no interrogatives of the type Would you like/Do you want ((NP))? and their elliptical variants You like/You want ((NP))?, Like/Want ((NP))? and ((NP))? . The central question is what type of theoretical relationship can be assumed between the different forms. A...
All human languages are characterised by inherent synchronic variability (Hudson, Cognitive Linguistics 8: 73––108, 1997, English Language and Linguistics 11: 383––405, 2007a) and are subject to change over time. Consequently, due to this central role of variation and change, any...
This article discusses the English construction variously known as Locative Inversion or Stylistic Inversion. It shows that the construction displays a unique ensemble of grammatical and usage properties that can be stated but not motivated through purely grammatical means. In search of an...
In this paper, I explore the hypothesis that constructions —— here understood primarily as the dependencies of Word Grammar —— can undergo systematic change, sometimes partly due to the effects of the grammaticalization of a lexical item or class of lexical items. I argue that the...
The seeming absence of negative evidence in the input that children receive during language acquisition has long been regarded as a serious problem for non-nativist linguistic theories. Among the solutions that have been suggested for this problem, preemption by competing structures is doubtless...
This article contributes to the nascent field of Cognitive Sociolinguistics. In particular, we are interested in how usage-based cognitive linguistics and variationist sociolinguistics may enrich each other. We first discuss some of the ways in which variationist insights have led cognitive...
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