XIX

ADVERB

1. The adverb is usually defined as a word expressing either property of an action, or property of another property, or circumstances in which an action occurs. This definition, though certainly informative and instructive, fails to directly point out the relation between the adverb and the adjective as the primary qualifying part of speech.

In an attempt to overcome this drawback, let us define the adverb as a notional word expressing a non-substantive property, that is, a property of a non-substantive referent. This formula immediately shows the actual correlation between the adverb and the adjective, since the adjective is a word expressing a substantive property.

Properties may be of a more particular, "organic" order, and a more general and detached, "inorganic" order. Of the organic properties, the adverb denotes those characterizing processes and other properties. Of the inorganic properties, the adverb denotes various circumstantial characteristics of processes or whole situations built around processes.

The above definition, approaching the adverb as a word of the secondary qualifying order, presents the entire class of adverbial words as the least self-dependent of all the four notional parts of speech. .Indeed, as has been repeatedly pointed out, the truly complete nominative value is inherent only in the noun, which is the name of substances. The verb comes next in its self-dependent nominative force, expressing processes as dynamic relations of substances, i.e. their dynamic relational properties in the broad sense. After that follow qualifying parts of speech - first the adjective denoting qualifications of substances, and then the adverb denoting qualifications of non-substantive phenomena which find themselves within the range of notional signification.

As we see, the adverb is characterized by its own, specific nominative value, providing for its inalienable status in the system of the parts of speech. Hence, the complaints of some linguists that the adverb is not rigorously defined and in fact presents something like a "dump" for those words which have been rejected by other parts of speech can hardly be taken as fully justified. On the other hand, since the adverb does denote qualifications of the second order, not of the first one like the adjective, it includes a great number of semantically weakened words which are in fact intermediate between notional and functional lexemes by their status and often display features of pronominal nature.



2. In accord with their categorial meaning, adverbs are characterized by a combinability with verbs, adjectives and words of adverbial nature. The functions of adverbs in these combinations consist in expressing different adverbial modifiers. Adverbs can also refer to whole situations; in this function they are considered under the heading of situation-"determinants". Cf:.

The woman was crying hysterically, (an adverbial modifier of manner, in left-hand contact combination with the verb-predicate) Wilson looked at him appraisingly. (an adverbial modifier of manner, in left-hand distant combination with the verb-predicate) Without undressing she sat down to the poems, nervously anxious to like them... (an adverbial modifier of property qualification, in right-hand combination with a post-positional stative attribute-adjective) You've gotten awfully brave, awfully suddenly, (an adverbial modifier of intensity, in right-hand combination with an adverb-aspective determinant of the situation) Then he stamps his boots again and advances into the room. (two adverbial determinants of the situation: the first - of time, in right-hand combination with the modified predicative construction; the second - of recurrence, in left-hand combination with the modified predicative construction)

Adverbs can also combine with nouns acquiring in such cases a very peculiar adverbial-attributive function, essentially in post-position, but in some cases also in pre-position. E.g.:

The world today presents a picture radically different from what it was before the Second World War. Our vigil overnight was rewarded by good news: the operation seemed to have succeeded. Franklin D. Roosevelt, the then President of the United States, proclaimed the "New Deal" - a new Government economic policy.

...

The use of adverbs in outwardly attributive positions in such and like examples appears to be in contradiction with the functional destination of the adverb - a word that is intended to qualify a non-nounal syntactic element by definition.

However, this seeming inconsistence of the theoretical interpretation of adverbs with their actual uses can be clarified and resolved in the light of the syntactic principle of nominalization elaborated within the framework of the theory of paradigmatic syntax (see further). In accord with this principle, each predicative syntactic construction paradigmatically correlates with a noun-phrase displaying basically the same semantic relations between its notional constituents. A predicative construction can be actually changed into a noun-phrase, by which change the dynamic situation expressed by the predicative construction receives a static name. Now, adverbs-determinants modifying in constructions of this kind the situation as a whole, are preserved in the corresponding nominalized phrases without a change in their inherent functional status. Cf.:

The world that exists today.The world today. We kept vigil overnight. Our vigil overnight. Then he was the President. The then President.

These paradigmatic transformational correlations explain the type of connection between the noun and its adverbial attribute even in cases where direct transformational changes would not be quite consistent with the concrete contextual features of constructions. What is important here is the fact that the adverb used to modify a noun actually relates to the whole corresponding situation underlying the noun-phrase.

3.In accord with their word-building structure adverbs may be simple and derived.

Simple adverbs are rather few, and nearly all of them display functional semantics, mostly of pronominal character: here, there, now, then, so, quite, why, how, where, when.

The typical adverbial affixes in affixal derivation are, first and foremost, the basic and only productive adverbial suffix -ly (slowly, tiredly, rightly, firstly), and then a couple of others of limited distribution, such as -ways (sideways, crossways), -wise (clockwise), -ward(s) (homewards, seawards, afterwards). The characteristic adverbial prefix is a- (away, ahead, apart, across).

Among the adverbs there ate also peculiar composite formations and phrasal formations of prepositional, conjunctional and other types: sometimes, nowhere, anyhow; at least, at most, at last; to and fro; upside down; etc.

Some authors include in the word-building sets of adverbs also formations of the type from outside, till now, before then, etc. However, it is not difficult to see that such formations differ in principle from the ones cited above. The difference consists in the fact that their parts are semantically not blended into an indivisible lexemic unity and present combinations of a preposition with a peculiar adverbial substantive - a word occupying an intermediary lexico-grammatical status between the noun and the adverb. This is most clearly seep on ready examples liberally offered by English texts of every stylistical standing. E.g.:

The pale moon looked at me from above. By now Sophie must have received the letter and very soon we shall hear from her. The departure of the delegation is planned for later this week.

The freely converted adverbial substantives in prepositional collocations belong to one of the idiomatic characteristics of English, and may be likened, with due alteration of details, to partially substantivized adjectives of the adjectivid type (see Ch. XVIII, 4). On this analogy the adverbial substantives in question may be called "adverbids".

Furthermore, there are in English some other peculiar structural types of adverbs which are derivationally connected with the words of non-adverbial lexemic classes by conversion. To these belong both adverbs of full notional value and adverbs of half-notional value.

A peculiar set of converted notional adverbs is formed by adjective-stem conversives, such as fast, late, hard, high, close, loud, tight, etc. The peculiar feature of these adverbs consists in the fact that practically all of them have a parallel form in -ly, the two component units of each pair often differentiated in meaning or connotation. Cf.: to work hard - hardly to work at all; to fall flat into the water - to refuse flatly; to speak loud - to criticize loudly; to fly high over the lake - to raise a highly theoretical question; etc.

Among the adjective-stem converted adverbs there are a few words with the non-specific -ly originally in-built in the adjective: daily, weekly, lively, timely, etc.

The purely positional nature of the conversion in question, i.e. its having no support in any differentiated categorial paradigms, can be reflected by the term "fluctuant conversives" which we propose to use as the name of such formations.

As for the fluctuant conversives of weakened pronominal semantics, very characteristic of English are the adverbs that positionally interchange with prepositions and conjunctive words: before, after, round, within, etc. Cf.: never before - never before our meeting; somewhere round - round the corner; not to be found within within a minute; etc.

Of quite a different nature are preposition-adverb-like elements wiich, placed in post-position to the verb, form a semantic blend with it. By combining with these elements, verbs of broader meaning are subjected to a regular, systematic multiplication of their semantic functions. E.g.: to give - to give up, to give in, to give out, to give away, to give over, etc.; to set - to set up, to set in, to set forth, to set off, to set down, etc.; to get - to get on, to get off, to get up, to get through, to get about, etc.; to work - to work up, to work in, to work out, to work away, to work over, etc.; to bring - to bring about, to bring up, to bring through, to bring forward, to bring down, etc.

The function of these post-positional elements is either to impart an additional aspective meaning to the verb-base, or to introduce a lexical modification to its fundamental semantics. E.g:. to bring about - to cause to happen; to reverse; to bring up - to call attention to; to rear and educate; to bring through - to help overcome a difficulty or danger; to save (a sick person); to bring forward - to introduce for discussion; to carry to the next page (the sum of figures); to bring down - to kill or wound; to destroy; to lower (as prices, etc.),

The lexico-grammatical standing of the elements in question has been interpreted in different ways. Some scholars have treated them as a variety of adverbs (H. Palmer, A. Smirnitsky); others, as preposition-like functional words (I. Anichkov, N. Amosova); still others, as peculiar prefix-like suffixes similar to the German separable prefixes (Y. Zhiuktenko); finally, some scholars have treated these words as a special set of lexical elements functionally intermediate between words and morphemes (BA. Ilyish; B.S. Khaimovich and B.I. Rogovskaya). The cited variety of interpretations, naturally, testifies to the complexity of the problem. Still, we cannot fail to see that one fundamental idea is common to all the various theories advanced, and that is the idea of the functional character of the analysed elements. Proceeding from this idea, we may class these words as a special functional set of particles, i.e. words of semi-morphemic nature, correlative with prepositions and conjunctions.

As for the name to be given to the words for their descriptive identification, out of the variety of those already existing ("postpositions", "adverbial word-morphemes", "adverbial postpositions", etc.) we would prefer the term "postpositives" introduced by N. Amosova. While evading the confusion with classical "postpositions" developed in some languages of non-Indo-European types (i.e. post-nounal analogues of prepositions), this term is fairly convenient for descriptive purposes and at the same time is neutral categorially, i.e. it easily admits of additional specifications of the nature of the units in question in the course of their further linguistic study.

4. Adverbs are commonly divided into qualitative, quantitative and circumstantial.

By qualitative such adverbs are meant as express immediate, inherently non-graded qualities of actions and other qualities. The typical adverbs of this kind are qualitative adverbs in -ly. E.g.:

The little boy was crying bitterly over his broken toy. The plainly embarrassed Department of Industry confirmed the fact of the controversial deal.

The adverbs interpreted as "quantitative" include words of degree. These are specific lexical units of semi-functional nature expressing quality measure, or gradational evaluation of qualities. They may be subdivided into several very clearly pronounced sets.

The first set is formed by adverbs of high degree. These adverbs are sometimes classed as "intensifiers": very, quite, entirely, utterly, highly, greatly, perfectly, absolutely, strongly, considerably, pretty, much. The second set includes adverbs of excessive degree (direct and reverse) also belonging to the broader subclass of intensifiers: too, awfully, tremendously, dreadfully, terrifically. The third set is made up of adverbs of unexpected degree: surprisingly, astonishingly, amazingly. The fourth set is formed by adverbs of moderate degree: fairly, comparatively, relatively, moderately, rather. The fifth set includes adverbs of low degree: slightly, a little, a bit. The sixth set is constituted by adverbs of approximate degree: almost, nearly. The seventh set includes adverbs of optimal degree: enough, sufficiently, adequately. The eighth set is formed by adverbs of inadequate degree: insufficiently, intolerably, unbearably, ridiculously. The ninth set is made up of adverbs of under-degree: hardly, scarcely.

As we see, the degree adverbs, though usually described under the heading of "quantitative", in reality constitute a specific variety of qualitative words, or rather some sort of intermediate qualitative-quantitative words, in so far as they are used as quality evaluators. In this function they are distinctly different from genuine quantitative adverbs which are directly related to numerals and thereby form sets of words of pronominal order. Such are numerical-pronominal adverbs like twice, thrice, four times, etc.; twofold, threefold, manifold, etc.

Thus, we will agree that the first general subclass of adverbs is formed by qualitative adverbs which are subdivided into qualitative adverbs of full notional value and degree adverbs - specific functional words.

Circumstantial adverbs are also divided into notional and functional.

The functional circumstantial adverbs are words of pronominal nature. Besides quantitative (numerical) adverbs mentioned above, they include adverbs of time, place, manner, cause, consequence. Many of these words are used as syntactic connectives and question-fonnuig functionals. Here belong such words as now, here, when, where, so, thus, how, why, etc.

As for circumstantial adverbs of more self-dependent nature, they include two basic sets: first, adverbs of time; second, adverbs of place: today, tomorrow, already, ever, never, shortly, recently, seldom, early, late; homeward, eastward, near, far, outside, ashore, etc. The two varieties express a general idea of temporal and spatial orientation and essentially perform deictic (indicative) functions in the broader sense. Bearing this in mind, we may unite them under the general heading of "orientative" adverbs, reserving the term "circumstantial" to syntactic analysis of utterances.

Thus, the whole class of adverbs will be divided, first, into nominal and pronominal, and the nominal adverbs will be subdivided into qualitative and orientative, the former including genuine qualitative adverbs and degree adverbs, the latter falling into temporal and local adverbs, with further possible subdivisions of more detailed specifications.

As is the case with adjectives, this lexemic subcategorization of adverbs should be accompanied by a more functional and flexible division into evaluative and specificative, connected with the categorial expression of comparison. Each adverb subject to evaluational grading by degree words expresses the category of comparison, much in the same way as, mutatis mutandis, adjectives do. Thus, not only qualitative, but also orientative adverbs, providing they come under the heading of evaluative, are included into the categorial system of comparison. Cf.: quickly - quicker - quickest - less quickly - least quickly; frequently-more frequently-most frequently-less frequently - least frequently; ashore - more ashore - most ashore - less ashore-least ashore, etc.

Barring the question of the uses of articles in comparative-superlative collocations, all the problems connected with the adjectival degrees of comparison retain their force for the adverbial degrees of

comparison, including the problem of elative superlative.

5. Among the various types of adverbs, those formed from adjectives by means of the suffix -ly occupy the most representative place and pose a special problem.

The problem is introduced by the very regularity of their derivation, the rule of which can be formulated quite simply: each evaluative (or, to keep to lexical tradition, qualitative) adjective has a parallel adverb in -ly. E.g.: silent - silently, slow - slowly, tolerable - tolerably, pious - piously, sufficient - sufficiently, tired - tiredly, explosive - explosively, etc.

This regularity of formation accompanied by the general qualitative character of semantics gave cause to A.I. Smirnitsky to advance the view that both sets of words belong to the same part of speech, the qualitative adverbs in -ly being in fact adjectives of specific com-binability [, 1959, 174-175].

The strong point of the adjectival interpretation of qualitative adverbs in -ly is the demonstration of the actual similarity between the two lexemic sets in their broader evaluative function, which fact provides for the near-identity of the adjectival and adverbial grammatical categories of comparison. On the whole, however, the theory in question is hardly acceptable for the mere reason that derivative relations in general are not at all relations of lexico-grammatical identity; for that matter, they are rather relations of non-identity, since they actually constitute a system of production of one type of lexical units from another type of lexical units. As for the types of units belonging to the same or different lexemic classes, this is a question of their actual status in the system of lexicon, i.e. in the lexemic paradigm ot nomination reflecting the fundamental correlations between the lexemic sets of language (see Ch. IV, 8). Since the English lexicon does distinguish adjectives and adverbs; since adjectives are substantive-qualifying words in distinction to adverbs, which are non-substantive qualifying words; since, finally, adverbs in -ly do preserve this fundamental non-substantive-qualification character - there cannot be any question of their being "adjectives" in any rationally conceivable way. As for the regularity or irregularity of derivation, it is absolutely irrelevant to the identification of their class-lexemic nature.

Thus, the whole problem is not a problem of part-of-speech identity, it is a problem of inter-class connections, in particular, of inter-class systemic division of functions, and, certainly, of the correlative status of the compared units in the lexical paradigm of nomination.

But worthy of attention is the relation of the adverbs in question to adverbs of other types and varieties, i.e. their intra-class correlations. As a matter of fact, the derivational features of other adverbs, in sharp contrast to the -ly-adverbs, are devoid of uniformity to such an extent that practically all of them fall into a multitude of minor non-productive derivational groups. Besides, the bulk of notional qualitative adverbs of other than -ly-derivation have -ly-correlatives (both of similar and dissimilar meanings and connotations). These facts cannot but show that adverbs in -ly should be looked upon as the standard type of the English adverb as a whole.

 


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