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The Category of Definiteness and Nominal Predication

Authors
Publisher
Croatian philological society
Publication Date
Disciplines
  • Logic

Abstract

Through a review of selected grammars of the Croatian language, from Kašić until the present day, an analysis is given of the status of adjective as nominal predicate regarding the category of definiteness, and relating to the rules about the forms in which adjectives can be used as nominal predicates. It is shown that the adjective itself, used as nominal predicate, can not express definiteness for two reasons: 1) because as nominal predicate it belongs to the verbal paradigm, and 2) because there is no noun in the nominal predicate the definiteness of which would be expressed by the adjective as the grammaticalized means for expressing the category of definiteness in that nominal predicate. It is emphasized that it is wrong to draw conclusions about the definiteness or indefiniteness of an adjective only on the basis of its form, since the grammatical category of definiteness, as well as the forms through which it can be expressed, can only be discussed in connection with the noun.

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