Functional L-Derivation


A functional L-derivation is one which incorporates a grammatical feature, such as a case feature, from an underlying base structure. LMBM assumes that the Base Component is a categorial component which generates structures with functional category features in them -- something along the lines of Chomsky (1965). When these structures reach the lexicon, the lexicon may operate on them if they contain no more lexical items than are allowed in the compounds of a given language. An English NP, then, with an embedded relative clause may be reduced to a N if the NP contains only one lexeme and no more than one Case feature. See example (1-3) above, for an example of such a functional derivation. It is important to note that LMBM assumes that Ps are not lexical items but a type of adjectival pronoun. As a pronoun, they are generated in syntax as functional categories and are therefore available for incorporation in L-derivations, as the Subject function is incorporated in (1-3). This accounts for the fact that functional L-derivations generally express the same functions as Case systems, i.e.

  • Subject (paint-er, one who paints)
  • Object (paint-ing, that which is painted)
  • Locus (bak-ery, where one bakes)
  • Means (cook-er, the means for cooking)
  • Manner (friend-ly, like a friend)
  • Origin (Boston-ian, from Boston)
and so on. The parallel between L-derivation functions and Case functions is accounted for by the Unitary Grammatical Function Hypothesis.