On the role of conjunction in adjective ordering preferences

Cesar Manuel Rosales Jr., Gregory Scontras

Abstract


Adjective ordering preferences are robustly attested in English and many unrelated languages. In nominals with multi-adjective strings (e.g., big blue box), chances are the order of the adjectives is non-arbitrary. However, ordering preferences are claimed to neutralize in cases where multi-adjective strings are formed via conjunction (e.g., blue and big box). We provide empirical evidence in support of this claim, but with an important caveat: conjunction neutralizes adjective ordering preferences in languages like Spanish where multi-adjective strings obligatorily feature conjunction. In English, where multi-adjective strings optionally feature conjunction, ordering preferences persist in the presence of conjunction.


Keywords


adjective ordering; subjectivity; conjunction; Spanish

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3765/plsa.v4i1.4524

Copyright (c) 2019 Cesar Manuel Rosales Jr., Gregory Scontras

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