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Introduction To Word Order

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Chapter Summary

Although almost every page of an Ancient Greek text contains several noun phrases (NPs) with one or more modifiers, the order of the constituents of these NPs has received very little attention. This is due to the fact that - irrespective of the order of the constituents in Greek - the order of the constituents in a translation is rather set. This chapter presents an overview of the various aspects of word order, all of which have been used to explain word order variation in the Greek NP in the more or less recent past, and provides the theoretical framework of the author's research. Style proved to be incapable of explaining the use of different ordering patterns in the same sentence or passage, Brunel's syntactic explanation turned out to be inspired by a predisposed rejection of pragmatic factors and the semantic explanations proved to depend on the context more than a semantic explanation should.

Keywords: Ancient Greek text; noun phrases (NPs); word order



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