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Type-1 Sentences: Verb+Subject

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Chapter Summary

In T1-sentences, the post-verbal subject is an obligatory nominative complement of the verb. This chapter examines the grammarians position regarding the relationship between VSO and VOS sentences for the T1-sentences. The concept of taqdim wa-taʾxīr is used in relation to a wide range of constructions across the three sentence types. The chapter focuses on the questions relating to the position of the subject (fāʿil) and the direct object (mafʿūl) relative to the verb. The medieval Arab grammarian Sībawayhi makes it clear that both VSO and VOS are legitimate word-order patterns in Arabic, though the former is the more common and preferable one. As for the relationship between VSO on one hand and VOS/OVS on the other, later grammarians seem to follow Sībawayhis use of taqdīm, providing no clear-cut evidence for Tm. The chapter also looks at some interesting cases where object preposing is pragmatically motivated.

Keywords: basic word order; medieval Arab grammarians; post-verbal subject; taqdīm wa-taʾxīr; Type-1 sentences; VOS sentences; VSO sentences



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