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Making use of phrase structure rules for English, explain why the following sentences are ungrammatical. One example is done for you. *Blue Jays pulled stunner Wednesday night. Explanation: In...

Making use of phrase structure rules for English, explain why the following sentences are ungrammatical. One example is done for you. *Blue Jays pulled stunner Wednesday night. Explanation: In English, the determiners are in the specifier position of NP, which precedes the N head. In the above sentence the specifier, a, follows the head, stunner.

a. *The students speak can Esperanto.

b. *The professor takes the train Kingston to.

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a. *The students speak can Esperanto.

Some auxiliary verbs and modals must agree with the tense feature (T) of the main verb in English and precede the verb phrase (VP) containing the head verb. Since modals and auxiliaries can be optional, they sometimes appear in brackets.

S-->NP (Modal/Aux) VP

In a different version of Phrase Structure Rules (PSR), auxiliary verbs or modals can occur inside the verb phrase (VP) and precede the verb phrase containing the head verb (recursion).

S-->NP VP

VP--> Aux VP

VP--> V NP

In each of these cases, the auxiliary verbs or modals precede the main verb in declarative sentences in English. In the example "The students speak can Esperanto," however, the modal ‘can’ follows the main verb ‘speak’, which leads to an ungrammaticality condition.

b. *The professor takes the train Kingston to.

In English, a Prepositional Phrase (PP) may follow the Noun Phrase (NP) containing the head N as part of a whole NP in this phrase structure rule: NP-->(Det) (Adj) N (PP): the (Det) train (N) ({to (Prep.) Kingston (NP)}NP). A Prepositional Phrase comprises a head preposition and a Noun Phrase as in "to Kingston."

NP--> Det N PP ["the train (N) to Kingston (PP)"]

In the above English sentence example, "The professor takes the train Kingston to," however, the head preposition 'to' follows the prepositional phrase noun 'Kingston', making the NP "the train Kingston to" ungrammatical, since the NP should be "the train to Kingston" NP--> Det N (PP).

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