Linguistics and Philosophy

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 187–222 | Cite as

Temporal Prepositions and Temporal Generalized Quantifiers

  • Ian Pratt
  • Nissim Francez
Article

Abstract

In this paper, we show how the problem of accounting for the semanticsof temporal preposition phrases (tPPs) leads us to some surprisinginsights into the semantics of temporal expressions ingeneral. Specifically, we argue that a systematic treatment of EnglishtPPs is greatly facilitated if we endow our meaning assignments with context variables, a device which allows a tPP to restrict domainsof quantification arising elsewhere in a sentence. We observe that theuse of context variables implies that tPPs can modify expressions intwo ways, and we use this observation to predict the behaviour of tPPswhose complements are themselves modified by other tPPs.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ian Pratt
    • 1
  • Nissim Francez
    • 1
  1. 1.Computer Science DepartmentUniversity of ManchesterManchesterU.K.

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