Genitive arguments and semantic roles

c stirling bartholomew cc.constantine at worldnet.att.net
Sat Oct 27 17:21:16 EDT 2001


on 10/26/01 3:06 PM, Iver Larsen wrote:

> In semantics, it is more common to talk about verbs that have one, two or
> three basic valencies. These valencies are like arms that go out from the
> verb nucleus and are able to grab one to three nominals in various roles.
> The primary or basic semantic roles are: 1) agent (with subclasses:
> experiencer and cause), 2) patient or undergoer, 3) beneficiary or location.
> There are many secondary semantic roles like: Instrument, goal, path etc.,
> but these are normally attached to the verb nucleus by secondary binding
> forces that in Greek and English as a norm are expressed by prepositions.
> The genitive is a morphological case, but not a semantic case. It functions
> to bind two nominals together.
> The syntactical passive corresponds to making the agent role implicit. This
> means that either the patient or beneficiary becomes the grammatical
> subject.

Iver and Carl,

Here is question from Homer's Iliad, Carl:

B 346 TOUSDE D EA FQINUQEIN ENA KAI DUO TOI KEN ACAIWN
B 347 NOSFIN BOULEUWS ANUSIS D OUK ESSETAI AUTWN
B 348 PRIN ARGOSD IENAI PRIN KAI DIOS AIGIOCOIO
B 349 GNWMENAI EI TE YEUDOS UPOSCESIS EI TE KAI OUKI

Take a look at DIOS AIGIOCOIO. Looks to me like the genitive constituent
DIOS AIGIOCOIO is functioning in semantic role of patient relative to
GNWMENAI. A.R. Benner (Selections from Homer's Iliad, 1908 page 389 #174)
states: "The genitive . . . sometimes indicates a person (or thing) about
whom (or which) something is heard, learned or known."

My questions are: How many arguments (valences) are attached to the
infinitive GNWMENAI here? Is DIOS AIGIOCOIO an object of knowledge here and
if so is does it perform in a semantic role? If so what role?

Perhaps (Iver?) one thing we need here is a definition of semantic roles and
how they differ from semantic fucntions.

Thanks,

Clay   

--  
Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062





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