Linguistics and Literature Studies Vol. 5(3), pp. 149 - 159
DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050301
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Adjective Distribution in Mongolian and Japanese

Wenchao Li *
Department of Japanese Study, Zhejiang University, China


This paper tackles how adjectives distribute in Mongolian and Japanese in light of the framework 'scale structure'. It is explicated that Mongolian resultatives are of three types, i.e. adjective-post resultative; adjective-initial resultative; co-verb resultative. The acceptability of adjectival complements in inherent resultatives runs from 'Totally open-scale AP' down to 'Lower closed-scale AP, Upper-closed scale AP, Totally closed-scale AP'. Mongolian welcomes all layers of adjectives in direct perception expressions. Japanese adjectives are re-categorised into two types, i.e. open-scale adjectives (corresponding to the traditional i-adjective) and closed-scale adjectives (corresponding to the traditional na-adjective). Though both are capable of rendering an inherent result, the resultatives rendered by open-scale adjectives and closed-scale adjectives present different lexicalisation patterns. Moreover, like Mongolian, derived resultatives are also missing in Japanese. The lack of derived resultatives in Altaic languages is down to the following reason, i.e. Altaic languages are likely to lexicalise the RESULT into the MAIN VERB. In inherent resultatives, there is a connection between CAUSE EVENT and RESULT EVENT, i.e. the verb carries an implication of result. In derived resultatives, a GAP arises between ACTION and RESULT. Regarding direct perception expressions, Japanese seems to welcome both open-scale and closed-scale APs. The perceptual verb 見るmiru solely delivers the perceived event and is thus deemed objective. 見える mieru, on the other hand, cannot fulfil a metaphorical interpretation, and appears to be subjective.

Scale Structure, Adjectives, Mongolian, Japanese

Cite This Paper in IEEE or APA Citation Styles
(a). IEEE Format:
[1] Wenchao Li , "Adjective Distribution in Mongolian and Japanese," Linguistics and Literature Studies, Vol. 5, No. 3, pp. 149 - 159, 2017. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050301.

(b). APA Format:
Wenchao Li (2017). Adjective Distribution in Mongolian and Japanese. Linguistics and Literature Studies, 5(3), 149 - 159. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050301.