Corpus-Based Studies on Non-Finite Complements in Recent English

  • Paul Rickman
  • Juhani Rudanko

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Paul Rickman, Juhani Rudanko
    Pages 1-14
  3. Paul Rickman, Juhani Rudanko
    Pages 97-103
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 105-108

About this book


This book showcases fresh research into the underexplored territory of complementation through a detailed analysis of gerunds and ‘to’ infinitives involving control in English. Drawing on large electronic corpora of recent English, it examines subject control in adjectival predicate constructions with ‘scared’, ‘terrified’ and ‘afraid’, moving on to a study of object control with the verbal predicate ‘warn’. In each chapter a case study is presented of a matrix adjective that selects both infinitival and gerundial complements, and a central theme is the application of the Choice Principle as a novel factor bearing on complement selection. The authors argue that it is helpful to view the patterns in question as constructions, as combinations of form and meaning, within the system of English predicate complementation, and convincingly demonstrate how a new gerundial pattern has emerged and spread in the course of the last two centuries. This book will appeal to scholars of semantics, corpus linguistics, and historical linguistics as well as those with an interest in variation and change in recent English more generally. 


Choice Principle Bach's Generalization Hansard corpus regional variation British English American English complementation Subject control object control Great Complement Shift Corpus of Historical American English COHA British National Corpus diachronic change understood objects adjectival complementation

Authors and affiliations

  • Paul Rickman
    • 1
  • Juhani Rudanko
    • 2
  1. 1.English Language, Literature and TranslationUniversity of TampereTampereFinland
  2. 2.English Language, Literature and TranslationUniversity of TampereTampereFinland

Bibliographic information