# Thread: diagramming connectors

1. ## diagramming connectors

In this thread, I am going to provide Philo's classification of connectors and put some more flesh, including diagrams, on the bones.

Connectors belong to the same word class: function words. It means they have functions. What are they? They serve to join words, phrases, and clauses. They comprise words of four main classes:

I. Conjunctions

1. Coordinating Conjunctions (aka the coordinator)
2. Subordinating Conjunctions (subordinator)
3. Correlative Conjunctions

1. They are used to indicate a relationship between two words, phrases, and clauses, that are at the same level of syntactic hierarchy.

Conjunctions - FANBOYS

2. By contrast, a subordinator introduce a dependent clause.
Common subordinators are:

subordinating conjunction - definition and examples of subordinating conjunction

3. A correlative conjunction is a paired conjunction that link balanced words, phrases, clauses.

correlative conjunction - definition and examples of correlative conjunctions

II. Connective Adverbs
I am not going to tell you what they do. By the time you have read through them, you will see.

2.1. Adnominal (adjectival) Relative Adverbs

What does each word mean? In this expression, adnominal means the subordinate clause, which an adverb introduces, is adjectival in nature; that is, it specifies an attribute related to a referent expressed in the main clause.

2.2. Nominal Relative Adverbs
Nominal means the relative clause is a noun phrase. Adverb means the relative clause is introduced by an adverb. Relative means the relative clause is related to something.

2.3. Adverbial Conjuncts
These are words like 'however' and 'therefore' which chiefly provide a semantic link between separate sentences but are often used like coordinators to link coordinate clauses within the same sentence.

2.4. Conjunctive Adverbs (≠ Adverbial Conjuncts)

III. Connective Pronouns

IV. Connective Adjectives/Determiners

2. ## Re: diagramming connectors

Well done with the diagramming, which must have been very time-consuming, but I'm afraid there are still a number of inaccuracies, primarily:

1. In

He told who he could tell where he was.

'who he could tell' is not conjunctive but nominal relative, making 'who' here (actually, more naturally expressed in any case by 'who(m)ever') a nominal relative pronoun.

Note, as previously mentioned, that no form in -ever can serve as a conjunctive (this fact comprising the chief formal difference between interrogatives and conjunctives).

2. Not an outright inaccuracy, but simply rather misleading: in

She is the woman who(m) I like.

it would, I think, be better to label 'who(m)' an adnominal relative pronoun.

Since everything you list here is 'connective' in some way (by virtue of being a 'connector'), the term itself is not especially helpful in distinguishing specific kinds!

3. I would also dispute the existence of the category of 'correlative conjunctions': many of the words composing this supposed group are simply loose combinations of [adverb/adverbial + coordinator]. It is the construction that results from their use that is properly described as 'correlative', not the constituent words themselves!!

4. Finally - and this is perhaps an esthetic rather than a technical point - you have chosen to divide the words up according to form-class rather than according to connective type (that is, you have placed all the pronouns together, all the adverbs, and so forth, as opposed to all the relatives, all the conjunctives, etc.). My experience as as a teacher, rather than as an academic, is that learners actually find the latter arrangement to be somewhat more 'digestible': essentially, the adnominal relative pronoun, for instance, has more in common with the adnominal relative adverb than it does with the nominal relative pronoun.

Again, just a few thoughts that I hope will be of help!

3. ## Re: diagramming connectors

Thank you Philo. You have ensured again that I will not dangle my feet today. Feel free to teart my posts apart. I will not ever make progress without useful comments. Yes, it took more than 5 minutes to compose that post.

4. ## Re: diagramming connectors

Originally Posted by philo2009

He told who he could tell where he was.

'who he could tell' is not conjunctive but nominal relative, making 'who' here (actually, more naturally expressed in any case by 'who(m)ever') a nominal relative pronoun.
who he could tell = indirect object; An indirect object slot is filled by a noun, right? Yes, it is not an indirect or embedded question, isn't "who he could tell".

Originally Posted by philo2009
Note, as previously mentioned, that no form in -ever can serve as a conjunctive (this fact comprising the chief formal difference between interrogatives and conjunctives).
Clear (I hope). Nominal and conjunctive are mutually exclusive groups. Nominals can be in interrogative mood. Interrogative moods prefer -ever pronouns more.

Originally Posted by philo2009
2. Not an outright inaccuracy, but simply rather misleading: in

She is the woman who(m) I like.

it would, I think, be better to label 'who(m)' an adnominal relative pronoun.

Since everything you list here is 'connective' in some way (by virtue of being a 'connector'), the term itself is not especially helpful in distinguishing specific kinds!
Okay.

Originally Posted by philo2009
3. I would also dispute the existence of the category of 'correlative conjunctions': many of the words composing this supposed group are simply loose combinations of [adverb/adverbial + coordinator]. It is the construction that results from their use that is properly described as 'correlative', not the constituent words themselves!!
Is an adverbial a word, phrase, or clause that does not belong to the adverb word class but functions like one?

Originally Posted by philo2009
4. Finally - and this is perhaps an esthetic rather than a technical point - you have chosen to divide the words up according to form-class rather than according to connective type (that is, you have placed all the pronouns together, all the adverbs, and so forth, as opposed to all the relatives, all the conjunctives, etc.). My experience as as a teacher, rather than as an academic, is that learners actually find the latter arrangement to be somewhat more 'digestible': essentially, the adnominal relative pronoun, for instance, has more in common with the adnominal relative adverb than it does with the nominal relative pronoun.

Again, just a few thoughts that I hope will be of help!
I see your point. I do not think I will ever teach English. But then, there is a lot of virtue in the saying: "Never say never."

5. ## Re: diagramming connectors

Wow, what an intense exchange. It makes me so aware of the difference in British vs American "dialects" in phonology and syntax. The American version, by comparison is like a log cabin as opposed to a mansion.
Happily for my purposes, the terms are left out of Reed-Kellogg diagrams.
LF

6. ## Re: diagramming connectors

Originally Posted by Kondorosi

Is an adverbial a word, phrase, or clause that does not belong to the adverb word class but functions like one?

There is actually some inconsistency among grammarians in the application of this term: I use it in the wider, more traditional sense of any word or phrase that serves any kind of adverbial function (which naturally includes single-word 'adverbs'), but there are those (esp. Quirk et al.) who prefer to reserve it for modifiers to the verb phrase (i.e. including 'really' in 'really working hard' but excluding it as used in 'really hardworking'). This is, I'm afraid, not a distinction that I've ever found to be particularly useful!

7. ## Re: diagramming connectors

As a carpenter, my neighbor has told me that my approach is to "never do something simple that can be made complicated".
I feel as if it applies to this kind of discussion, and, once again I feel as if the American vs British approaches to grammar compare to log cabins vs Victorian mansions.
My narrow purpose being to make Reed-Kellogg a competitive sport, I see little use in quibbling over terms (which would not change locations within the diagram anyway).
I also fail to see the clear distinction between morphological terms and syntactical terms -- a distinction which I think needs to be preliminary.
In American terms, there are 8 parts of speech (though interjections should possibly not be included, and functions words perhaps should be). There are about 25 parts of sentences. They are distinct.
Linguist Farmer
Perhaps a "bi-dialectic" glossary of terms would be useful (at least to me).

#### Posting Permissions

• You may not post new threads
• You may not post replies
• You may not post attachments
• You may not edit your posts
•