A Constructional Approach to Resultatives

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Providing a unified solution within the frameworks of construction grammar and frame semantics, Hans Boas develops an account of resultative constructions in English by grouping them in two classes: conventionalized and non-conventionalized. The usage-based model employed here proposes that each particular sense of a verb constitutes a conventionalized mini-construction, which is crucial information for the licensing of arguments. In contrast, verbs in non-conventionalized resultative constructions can acquire a novel meaning and thereby a new syntactic frame. English and German resultatives are compared to illustrate the distinct lexical polysemy networks of English and German verbs.