View table of contents for this book View table of contents for LinguaLinksLibrary Go to LinguaLinks home page
 

What is nonspecificity?

 

Definition
 

Nonspecificity is a kind of definiteness, expressed by an interpretation of or grammatical marking on a noun or noun phrase, indicating that the speaker presumably does not know the identity of the referent(s).

Example (English)
 
  • The following sentence has the interpretation that the speaker does not have a particular Norwegian in mind:

  • Minna wants to meet a Norwegian.

    Source:

    Hawkins, J. 1978 204

  • Generic
      A nonspecific is a kind of
     
    Sources
     

    Anderson, S. 1985 179

     

    Hawkins, J. 1978 203–204


    Context for this page:

    Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 5.0 published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 2003. [Ordering information.]

    Page content last modified: 5 January 2004

    © 2004 SIL International