View Chapters

Book: Implicit Subject and Direct Object Arguments in Hungarian Language Use

Chapter: First (A) Manner: The Role of the Lexical-semantic Representation of Verbs

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.32450


In Chapter 4, I will concentrate on how the lexical-semantic properties of verbs influence the use of verbs with lexically unrealised subject and direct object arguments in an interaction with other grammatical requirements and contextual factors. Firstly, in Section 4.1, I will examine the occurrence of verbs with implicit subject arguments. I will provide a new explanation for the occurrences of verbs of natural phenomena with explicit and implicit subject arguments in Hungarian language use. I will rely on a wide range of data from various direct sources and demonstrate that verbs of natural phenomena are not subjectless in Hungarian as the Hungarian grammatical tradition supposes. I will propose a lexical-semantic representation for the verbs of natural phenomena on the basis of which the occurrences of these verbs with both explicit and implicit subjects can be explained in a unified way. In Section 4.1, I will also analyse another class of verbs, namely verbs of work which can be used with implicit subject arguments not only because of the pro-drop characteristics of Hungarian, but because of their lexical-semantic properties and contextual factors. In Section 4.2, I will investigate how the lexical-semantic properties of verbs license implicit direct object arguments in an interaction with morphosyntactic constraints and contextual factors. I will especially focus on the role of selection restrictions, the characteristic manners of action denoted by the verbs and the prototypical structure of implicit arguments.

Chapter Contributors

  • Enikő Németh T ( - enemeth) 'University of Szeged'