LINGUIST List 5.1144

Tue 18 Oct 1994

Qs: "-ing", Misspellings, French place names, Posture verbs

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  1. , -ing
  2. , Query: 'misspellings'
  3. , Query French place names
  4. , gramaticization of posture verbs

Message 1: -ing

Date: Fri, 14 Oct 94 13:00:20 CD-ing
From: <ISHAWVM1.NoDak.EDU>
Subject: -ing

Query about the word "painting" and the suffix -ing.

There is a discussion going on in one of the courses I teach about the
morphemic status of -ing. The majority of the students are undergraduate
seniors; the others are graduate students; the course deals with the grammar
of English. The issue revolves around -ing in the first sentence vis-a-vis
-ing in the other sentences:

 1.The painting on the wall was donated by the voters. The one on the
floor, leaning against the wall, was donated by the candidate.
 2.Their writings are used as examples of the best in the district.
 3.The reading was a success.
 4. The readings for tomorrow have been changed.
 5. The painting of the school was commissioned by the PTA.

Some students agree with Akmajian, Demers, Farmer & Harnish (__An Introduction
to Language and Communication__) that the -ing in these sentences is
derivational. Others, however, don't perceive "painting" in the first
sentence to be like the other -ing words, despite the*parallel word structure.
Reading, in its sense of 'a combination of reading excerpts/passages from
a work and talking about a work,' or readings in its sense of 'pages assigned
to be read' or 'texts to be read,' seem to retain a sense of process which
is present in all other cases and absent in the case of painting in sentence
number 1. * seemingly parallel

Please notice that the verbal base of -ing of
nominalizations in gerund constructions (The burning house...; Reading
Morrison would ...; ... her reading Morrison...; etc.) is not an issue.
I've looked at a number of books and articles that I have but haven't found
any that discusses painting specifically or -ing at any significant length.
Since this is a teaching situation, requiring an immediate treatment of the
issue, and one bound by time constraints, I thought I'd ask for your help.
Of course, references that point me to a lengthier discussion of -ing or a
discussion that includes some treatment of the word painting as used in the
sense of the word in the first sentence would be appreciated; I can always
come back to this point later in the course.

I. Shaw
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Message 2: Query: 'misspellings'

Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 16:48:35 Query: 'misspellings'
From: <>
Subject: Query: 'misspellings'

Hello, everyone. I am collecting real misspellings that are
systematic within the English phonological system. For example:

Due to flapping: 'deep-seeded' for 'deep-seated' or 'shuttered' for

Due to nasal assimilation: 'imput' for 'input'

Due to vowel reduction: 'laundramat' for 'laundromat'

Due to vowel reduction as well as deletion: 'idenety' for 'identity'

If anyone has some examples of such misspellings, due to these
or other processes of English, would you mind sending them to me?

If there is sufficient interest, I will compile a list for the
list (?).

If you have attribution for the error, so much the better. But
as long as it was attested sometime in your experience, fine. It
is an informal collection.


Jo Rubba
Assistant Professor
Humboldt State University
Arcata, CA 95521-8299
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Message 3: Query French place names

Date: Sun, 16 Oct 1994 17:06:13 Query French place names
Subject: Query French place names

My parents have just been travelling through Southern France, looking for
various Hugenot ancestors. They came across many place names ending in -ac.
e.g. Bergerac. They asked around to find out the significance of the
morpheme, but were told that no one knows.
Is that so?
Thanks for your help
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Message 4: gramaticization of posture verbs

Date: Sun, 16 Oct 1994 11:12:21 gramaticization of posture verbs
Subject: gramaticization of posture verbs

In Spanish Latin sedere "sit" and stare "stand" have become two different
"be" verbs with some similar developments in the rest of Romance. In Russian,
stat' "stand" also means "become"
Are there other languages with changes of a similar vein from posture verb to
existential or copula? Any references would be helpful. I will post a
summary if there seems to be sufficient interest.
Adger Williams
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