Theoretical Grammar

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1. The subject of theoretical grammar and its difference from practical grammar. The following course of theoretical grammar serves to describe the grammatical structure of the English language as a system where all parts are interconnected. The difference between theoretical and practical grammar lies in the fact that practical grammar prescribes certain rules of usage and teaches to speak (or write) correctly whereas theoretical grammar presents facts of language, while analyzing them, and gives no prescriptions. Unlike school grammar, theoretical grammar does not always produce a ready-made decision. In language there are a number of phenomena interpreted differently by different linguists. To a great extent, these differences are due to the fact that there exist various directions in linguistics, each having its own method of analysis and, therefore, its own approach to the matter. But sometimes these differences arise because some facts of language are difficult to analyze, and in this case the only thing to offer is a possible way to solve the problem, instead of giving a final solution. It is due to this circumstance that there are different theories of the same language phenomenon, which is not the case with practical grammar. 2. 2. A level can be defined as a subsystem of language which presents a

totality of homogeneous units and a set of rules regulating their use and
classification (ЛЭС 1990, 539). Language structure consists of three main
domains: phonetics, lexicon and grammar which are further subdivided and
form six levels: phonemic, morphemic, lexemic, phrasemic, sentential, or
proposemic and suprasentential, or dictemic.

12. Article is a determining unit of a specific nature accompanying the noun in communicative collocation. A(n)/the form a separate group or class characterized by:
* the lexico-grammatical meaning of definiteness/indefiniteness;  The lexical meaning of a(n) in ME is a very weak reminder of its original meaning (one), though it is not used with “plural” nouns. The lexical meaning of the in ME is a pale shadow of its original demonstrative meaning а the meaning of articles abstracts form the meaning of oneness in a(n) and demonstrative meaning in the. The names of the articles (definite/indefinite) denote the nearest approach to this lexico-grammatical meaning (definiteness/indefiniteness). * the right-hand combinability with nouns;

* the function of noun specifiers.
Status of the article in Modern English.
??? Is the article a word or a morpheme?
The article is usually a separate unit which may be divided from its noun by other words, chiefly adjectives. However, in certain languages the article may also be a morpheme attached to the noun as a kind of suffix (in Bulgarian, Rumanian, Swedish). If we interpret the article as a morpheme, the idea of a zero article would make no difficulty. If we take the article as a word, the idea of a ‘zero word’ would entail (cause) some difficulty (zero form). The notion ‘zero article’ is only possible if the article is not a word. 2 views:

1. the article is a word and the collocation “article + noun” is a phrase. 2. the article is a form element in the system of the noun. It is a morpheme or an auxiliary word, the phrase “article + noun” is a morphological formation.  

The definite article:
* -an object is singled out from all objects of the same class * -the whole class of objects, as distinct from other classes, is referred to. Another view:
* The dog has come home./The dog is a domestic animal. -> the meaning of the definite article is the same in both sentences, and their difference proceeds from the peculiarities of the predicatives and the words expressing them. Number of articles.

??? How many articles are there in English?
There are only 2 material articles, the and a(n).+ “zero” article -> there are 3...
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