Severing Scale Structure from the Adjective

Edward Matthew Husband


The scale structure of adjectives, whether an adjective measures on an open or closed scale, has certain grammatical consequences and is traditionally captured by encoding scale structure into an adjectives lexical representation and projecting it into the grammar. However, adjectives can exhibit scalar variability, suggesting that scale structure is not projected from the lexicon, but instead is constructed by the adjectives structural environment. I review a recent analysis of adjectival scale structure, observing that an economy condition with a single pos morpheme requires polysemy for these variable-behavior adjectives, and propose that splitting the pos morpheme and severing scale structure from the adjective captures scalar variability within a unified lexical entry without economy.

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