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    #1

    Phrase marker tree diagram help

    Hello, first time poster here. I was wondering if someone more enlightened than me could help diagram this sentence using the phrase marker tree diagram method.

    Here is the sentence:

    "No speakers have a disadvantage in their fundamental ability to function cognitively and expressively as a result of the variety of the language that they acquire."

    From what I understand, it's a complex sentence with "No speakers have a disadvantage in their fundamental ability to function cognitively and expressively" being the independent clause and "as a result of the variety of the language that they acquire" being the dependent/subordinate clause. I am unsure on how to diagram this sentence, however. Any help would be appreciated!

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    #2

    Re: Phrase marker tree diagram help

    I think you are in the wrong place here. But I could give you a starting tip

    [[QPNo speakers]VP have [QPa disadvantage]] [AdvP in their fundamental ability [AdVP to function cognitively and expressively]] [AdVP as a result] [AdvP of the variety [AdvP of the language]] [DP that [[PRN they] VP acquire.]]"

    The basic PPs are locative adverbs which, through their ability to take objects can be extended to larger adverbials. I see little point in defining PPs as something different to AdVP. Anything starting 'that...' may be labelled a CP, but 'that' is fundamentally a demonstrative pronoun.

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    #3

    Re: Phrase marker tree diagram help

    Quote Originally Posted by innocuous_elephant View Post
    Hello, first time poster here. I was wondering if someone more enlightened than me could help diagram this sentence using the phrase marker tree diagram method.

    Here is the sentence:

    "No speakers have a disadvantage in their fundamental ability to function cognitively and expressively as a result of the variety of the language that they acquire."

    From what I understand, it's a complex sentence with "No speakers have a disadvantage in their fundamental ability to function cognitively and expressively" being the independent clause and "as a result of the variety of the language that they acquire" being the dependent/subordinate clause. I am unsure on how to diagram this sentence, however. Any help would be appreciated!
    As a result of...acquire is not a clause but simply an extensive prepositional phrase**, introduced by the complex (a.k.a. phrasal) preposition 'as a result of' and having the following other main constituents:

    the variety: NP, direct object of as a result of
    of the language: adnominal PP, subjective genitive postmodifying variety
    that they acquire: adjectival clause introduced by relative pronoun 'that'

    Concerning the antecedent of the relative pronoun 'that', it could be equally meaningfully construed as 'the variety (of the language)' or as 'the language' (itself), since one could be said, in some sense, to acquire either.

    Concerning the function of the entire phrase as a result...acquire, it is a predicate adverbial postmodifying the main verb phrase have (a disadvantage in their fundamental ability to function cognitively and expressively).

    N.B. **Although it contains the subordinate clause 'that they acquire'.
    Last edited by philo2009; 06-Dec-2010 at 06:25.

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