The particularity of particles, or why they are not just ‘intransitive prepositions’

Abstract : Although the distinction between verb-preposition combinations (e.g., They fought over the money) and prima facie similar transitive verb-particle combinations (e.g., They handed over the money) is well known, some grammarians have taken the view that particles are in fact a sort of prepositions all the same, namely, intransitive ones. While this view is not faulty in itself, I do not subscribe to any of three related claims, namely (i) that directional particles and full directional PPs have the same syntactic distribution, (ii) that directional particles are shortened versions of full PPs, and (iii) that the use of a directional particle only differs from the use of a formally related full directional PP in leaving the reference object (i.e., the ‘landmark’ in Cognitive Grammar terms) understood. I argue that, since even directional particles can be quite different from their prepositional counterparts, it follows that we should consider all particles as a class distinct from prepositions.
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Contributor : Bert Cappelle <>
Submitted on : Sunday, March 26, 2017 - 10:35:10 PM
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Bert Cappelle. The particularity of particles, or why they are not just ‘intransitive prepositions’. Belgian Journal of Linguistics, John Benjamins Publishing, 2005, 18, pp.29-57. ⟨10.1075/bjl.18.04cap⟩. ⟨hal-01495793⟩

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