[developers] portuguese hpsg

Ann Copestake Ann.Copestake at cl.cam.ac.uk
Tue Apr 14 12:41:32 CEST 2009

crysmann at ifk.uni-bonn.de said:
>  What I'd suggest is to use sense tagging to identify predicates that display
> this behaviour so they can be detected downstream. 

> E.g. _marry_v_sym_rel or _be_v_sym_rel (as in "The winner is ...)

Wholeheartedly seconded.  I actually think there's a good argument that this 
is the most principled thing to do, but I won't try and make that here ...

Some/most of the symmetric predicates aren't fully symmetric, of course - 
standard example:

Kim and Sandy collided.
Kim collided with Sandy.
The drunk collided with the lamppost.
? The lamppost collided with the drunk.

Even in the case of highly symmetric predicates like `marry' - if it's 
possible to identify one participant as being more agentive than the other, 
that participant will tend to be subject.  So if we're talking about medieval 
societies where royal marriages were about alliances:

  The king married the earl's twelve year old daughter.

is more natural than the other way around.  


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