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The Immediate Constituent Analysis In Linguistics English Language Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Language
Wordcount: 2016 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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 Also called IC Analysis, in linguistics, a system of grammatical analysis that divides sentences into successive layers, or constituents, until, in the final layer, each constituent consists of only a word or meaningful part of a word. (A constituent is any word or construction that enters into some larger construction.) In the sentence “The old man ran away,” the first division into immediate constituents would be between “the old man” and “ran away.” The immediate constituents of “the old man” are “the” and “old man.” At the next level “old man” is divided into “old” and “man. In grammatical study we are concerned with morphemes and their arrangements but not save in an ancillary way with the phonemic shapes which represent morphemes.Cinsequently in the present sections we shall usually cite examples in their traditional orthography provided the language in question had one and that it involves only the Latin alplhabet.Claddical Greek and Chinese examples are given in well established transliterations or romanixastions. Genuine phonemic notation will be unused only when advisable for some special redone or for languages like monomania ethic have no traditional orthography.

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Most modern textbooks of linguistics attach great importance to that is called immediate constituent analysis. The term immediate constituent analysis was introduced by Bloomfield as follows any English speaking person who concerns himself with this matter is sure to tell us that the immediate constituents of poor john ran away there the two forms poor john and ran away that each of these is in turn a complex form that the immediate constituents of ran away are ran and away and that the constituents of poor john are poor and john. We can easily capture through going the given below example.

The dog killed the poor cat

In this sentence the noun phrases are given but we can easily divide and then make an understand to analysts in immediate constituent that is also one of the important one in linguistic. so there is an obvious parallelism between immediate constituent analysis and the traditional procedure of parsing sentences into subject and predicate and each of these where appropriate into words phrases and clauses jof various types. Bloomfield’s sentence phrases made up of the now john modified by the adjective poor and whose predicate is a verb phrase consisting of the Vern ran modifies by the adverb away. Underlying both approaches to ;grammatical analysis’ is the view that sentences are not just linear sequences of elements but are made up of layers of immediate constituent’s ;watch lower level constituent being part of a higher level constituents can be represented graphically in a number of ways we may use brackets or we may construct a tree diagram. These two methods of representation are equivalent. The symbols are employed here merely for convenience jof reference to the diagram the tree diagram given above is to be interpreted as follies’ the ultimate constituents jof the sentence the elements out of which the sentence is constructed are poor jog ran and away the words poor and gone are the immediate constituents of one construction poor john so the branches leading to them derive directly from one node the words ran and away are the immediate constituents of another contraction being related through the names highway node common to them both and the two constructions poor john and ran away are the immediate constituents of the highest level constriction the sentence itself so they b9oth derive directly from the node it will be observed that neither in the reprewntation of the constituent structure jof the sentence by mend of betray chest nor in the tree diagram have we in corporate the information that poor is an adjectival a that poor john is an noun phrase or of the notion of ,codification in these respects jour analysis jof the sentences into its constituents differs from ad so far is poorer than the analysis that would be given in terms of the categorizes of traditional grammar. One can distinguish three periods of development in the the airy of constituent structure. L; Bloomfield himself did little mortem than introduce the nn9otion ad explain it by means of examples he spoke of a proper analysis of the sentence into constituents as one which takes accent jof the meanings. his followers notably wells and harries formulated the principles of constituent anal7sis inn greater detail an replaced Bloomfield’s somewhere vague reference to taking account of the meanings with explicitly distributional criteria. Finally in the last few years the theory loft constituent structure has been formalized and subjected to mathematical study by Chomsky land jot her scholar who have given considerable attention to the nature jof the rules requluired to generate sentences dwoth the appropriate constituent structure.

There are five kinds of analysis in immediate constituents as follows:

1. Hierarchical Structure

2. Ambiguity

3. Markers

4. Discintious IC

5. Simultaneous IC

In the immediate constituent structure five of them given above are seminal things in linguistic so, it is very difficult to analysis of these things without making diagrams so lets to analysis of these things without having an analysis of morphemes as grouping things together in the fight way an analogy who is very keen to make a new kind of solution is so complicate. In our treatment of the general principles of formal grammar in immediate constituents we deliberately adopted the view that all sentences had a simple linear structure that every sentence of the language could be satis

Facvtyorilyu described from the grammatical point jof view as a string loft; constituents As a abstract illustration of what is meant by the term string which is the technical term used in mathematical treatments of the grammatical structure of language few may consider thane following instances.

1. Hierarchical structure:

The manly on the street is inclined to identify language with words and to think that to study words is to stuufyul; language this view l incorporates two errors. we obviate lone when we realize that morphemes rather than words are unimportant the other error is mow subtle the notion often unstated that we need only examine words as isolated units longer utterances being simply mechanical combinations jof at the smaller units. If lathes were the case then all we would have to learn kin studying a foreign language fowls; be the individual ljmorphemes and their meanings. the meaning jof any whole utterance wools be immediately obvious; jonn the basis of the meanings of the ultimate constituents .Anyone who has lacteally studied a foreign language knows that this is not true. for a striking example loft the falsity loft they assumption we turn to Chinese which is better than French or German jerk Spanish jfodrkl this purpose because ;it differs more drastically from English to any other languages.

As leis evidently; some of these English morphemes have meanings which are not easy to describe precisely in English one meets similar trouble in trying rot describe the meanings of some English morphemes inennglishj on general the meanings of morphemes in any one language bias any other language. A careful scrutiny of the meanings of; the seventeen constituent morphemes; of the sentence can at best yield some ague notion of what the whole sentence is about. The meaning of the whole sentence happens be this kind of the matters carries by what he hears. BY virtue of this advance orientation thane active speaker hears the cadence not as a linear string go morphemes but as it were in depth automatically grouping things together in the rightly lay. An; analogy list in order. when we kook at the middle assemblage ;of line segments Jon a either jay on a flat surface the depth that we perceive lies in ;us; not; ;in the figulure.yet our experience in visa perception is such that it ills’ hard to see as a complicated plane figure rather than I three dimensions the depth which tulle native speakers combination is common and that it carries the rather special partly unpredictable meaning probably likewise have automatically groups together as in fire but in a more complicated ;way if few are to ask that meads he would be pzzled for does not mean anything l;he would probably be unaware that he had heard this particular morpheme sequence inn the sentence and the speaker of the sentence weld scarcely realize that he had said it. All the above is applicable also to fenglish or any other language a meaningless sequence of morphemes like a man are can easily lube found in normal speech. It; occurs; in the dog has killed the poor cat.

2. Makers:

We must account for the slanting lines appearing in some of the diagrams. For example, the diagram indicates that the Ics of are the two words in a larger form without being a constituent jof it. Of course a different interpret ratio would be possible but the one we have chosen indicates that and rather than being Joni of the ics of what we may call a structural marker jar signal. some morphemes that is serve leno directly nas carriers of meaning but only as markers’ of the styrctural relationshjops between other forms.ad marks the fact that something before it ad something after it large the Ics larger grammatical form and ad also marks that a larger form as being of a certain type ;we would choose a similar interpltretration for the markers.

3. Ambiguity:

It is possible for a single sequence of segmental morphemes to have two alternative hierarchical organizations; unusually with a difference do; meaning sometimes but in the sentence he was dancing jw3oth the stout major person. We cannot tell whether the mans dancing partner is stout or not. the ambiguity jof its Ic structure is shown in the expression and such ambiguities remind us again jof the analogy with value perception.

4. Discontinuous Ic:

Our examples so far have had another property which is common but not nn9oversal forms which belong together as Ic of a larger form have been next to each other in linear sequence .Discontinues constituents are ninety at all uncoil for example in the English sentence the jot her is the discontinuous sequence. But constituents are not at all uncommon framing easy built is parenthesized lotto indicate that it is knot actually spoken there we laved lithe duplication but place a heavy line below the entry and mark with a dotted arrow the section between.

5. Simltaneosly Ic:

An intonation morpheme is probably always to be interpreted as one ic of the macro segment which includes the remainder of the macro segment no matter how complex constituting the other. In order to show this diagrammatically we have to introduce another special device, illustrated in their positions of the pills and tic correctly since any alternation in their position mighty yield a different sentence.

In grammatical ambiguity we can divide as follows that is also seminal thing in immediate constituent analysis:

A) They can fish.

B) Beautiful girl’s dress.

C) Some more convincing evidence.


Traditional grammar is a family of linguistic theories represented in the grammars written before the advent of scientific linguistics. I use the expression “family of theories” rather than the word “theory,” since traditional grammar is not a single, unchanging conceptual object. I assume, however, that it has certain fairly stable defining features. For convenience, I take many of my examples from the Latin grammar of Allen and Greenbush (1931) and the Greek grammar of H. W. Smyth (1916), since both these works are still in print and can be consulted by interested readers.


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