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  1. #21
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    Re: will as a lexical verb

    Not so long ago, in another post, I asked some questions on the subjunctive, and the first post I see on your blog, fivejedjon, is titled Subjunctive - how uncanny. Anyway, I think I'm going to bite into it a little now

  2. #22
    TheParser is offline VIP Member
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    Re: will as a lexical verb

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    In 'murder will out', meaning 'murder will become public (knowledge)' will is, once again, a modal auxiliary. In modern English, it is very rare to use a modal + full verb combination without actually using the full verb in this way, but you will occasionally hear, "I must away".

    A simple test is the third person -s ending. If it's there, it's a full verb, as in: He's a faith healer - he wills people well.

    If there is no -s ending, it's a modal: Death will come when it will come.

    This is not an infallible test if you are one of those who still use the present subjunctive, in which full verbs do not end in-s in the third person singular. Here is an example, using will=bequeath: I recommend that he will half of his estate to to his surviving sons, and half....

    The full verb uses DO for questions and negatives, the modal does not:

    Murder will not out.
    Murder don't will out. - Modal
    Death will not come.
    Death don't will come.- Modal
    He wills not people well. He doesn't will people well. - Full verb



    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Teacher Fivejedjon,


    (1) From your many past posts, I know that you are open-minded

    and eager for vigorous debate.

    (2) With that in mind, I most respectfully present for your

    consideration a scholar's viewpoint that I found on the Web

    (sourcing to follow presently):

    Constructions like ... "murder will out" ... in which an

    "auxiliary" is combined with an adverbial adjunct of

    direction, are regular idiom in Old, Middle and early

    Modern English. ... To call this idiom elliptical, as OED

    does, is misleading since it would suggest that the

    construction with an infinitive of a verb of motion

    ... should be the regular ("correct") one.


    I copied it word for word. Those quotation marks are his

    -- and very telling they are. Of course, I do not dare tell you

    how I interpret his words, but -- this time!!! -- I feel that I do

    understand what he is saying.

    *****

    Source: I googled: "Murder will out" lexical verb.

    The third result is entitled: An Historical Syntax of the English

    Language, Fredericus Theodorus Visser, Professor Emeritus, the

    University of Nijmegen (the Netherlands).

  3. #23
    5jj's Avatar
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    Re: will as a lexical verb

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    (1) From your many past posts, I know that you are open-minded and eager for vigorous debate.
    That's the first time for many years that anybody has thought I was open-minded.

    (2) With that in mind, I most respectfully present for your consideration a scholar's viewpoint that I found on the Web

    Constructions like ... "murder will out" ... in which an "auxiliary" is combined with an adverbial adjunct of direction, are regular idiom in Old, Middle and early Modern English. ... To call this idiom elliptical, as OED does, is misleading since it would suggest that the construction with an infinitive of a verb of motion ... should be the regular ("correct") one.
    Thank you for that, Parser. I had always thought of the construction as elliptical, but I now think Visser has a good point. In the modern (?) 'I must away', I had assumed that there was an 'understood 'go', but, having read Visser's words, I am inclined to think there isn't. We do not say (in this context), "I must go away"; we say things such as, "I must leave", "I must be off" or even, perhaps, "I must be away". It could be that auxiliary+adverbial adjunct was regular idiomatic usage.

    As far as the discussion in this thread is concerned, Visser does agree that the verb is an auxiliary.

  4. #24
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    Re: will as a lexical verb

    Quote Originally Posted by Kotfor View Post
    I'd like to know about will as a lexical verb. What kind of infinitive do we use with it? Is it a bare infinitive or not?

    Example with to

    1) A man can achieve what he wills to achieve.

    Example without to

    2) Does he will it stop growing?

    Which one is correct as for the use of infinitive after will?

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Kotfor,


    (1) I have found some sentences that illustrate the use of the

    lexical verb will.

    (2) I am happy to share with you this information, which comes

    from Webster's New International Dictionary, second edition (1959):

    (a) (to wish) 't is a withered pear; will you anything with it?

    (b) (to command) They willed me say so, madam.

    (c) (to determine by an act of choice) Two things [God] willeth,

    that we should be good, and that we should be happy. ***

    To will an aggressive war is a crime.

    (d) (to influence by one's will)

    (i) He willed her to raise her arm.

    (ii) She willed herself to sleep.

    (e) (to bequeath) He willed that his estate should be divided among
    his children.

    *****

    More helpful examples were found in the Random House College

    Dictionary, revised edition (1982):

    (f) He can walk if he wills it.

    (g) If he wills success, he can find it.

    (h) She was willed to walk the tightrope by the hypnotist.

    (i) To will is not enough; one must do.

    (j) Others debate, but the king wills.

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