All posts by Manfred

Manfred Sailer Institut für England- und Amerikastudien (Section English Linguistics) Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main Grüneburgplatz 1 D-60629 Frankfurt am Main Germany Homepage: Tel.: +49 - (0)69 - 798 32526 Fax: +49 - (0)69 - 798 32509 E-Mail: sailer "at" em "dot" uni-frankfurt "dot" de

Sailer & Lamoure at HPSG 2023

Manfred Sailer and Nicolas Lamoure (Frankfurt a.M.) presented a paper on “Superlative ‘ever’ in Dutch, French, German, and Spanish” at the 30th International Conference on Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar 2023.  Manfred and Nicolas look at the use of English ever in emphatic superlatives as in (1) in two Germanic and two Romance languages:

(1) a. nl: de beste opmerking ever ‘the best comment ever’
       b. de: bestes Bild ever ‘best picture ever’
       c. fr: la meilleure idée ever  ‘the best idea ever’
       d. es: la mejor foto ever ‘the best picture ever’ Continue reading Sailer & Lamoure at HPSG 2023

Bargmann “Chopping up idioms” published

Sascha Bargmann’s dissertation is now available from the university library server.
In his book, Sascha develops an argument for a consequent lexical treatment of idioms, whenever such a treatment is possible. To do this, he looks at data that have not been taken into account systematically in the previous literature.


Bargmann, Sascha. 2019. Chopping up idioms: Towards a combinatorial analysis. Frankfurt a.M.: University Library.

Workshop on “Coexistence, competion and change”

The 45th Annual Conference of the German Society of Linguistics (DGfS 2023) hosted a workshop on “Coexistence, competition and change: Structural borrowing and the dynamics of asymmetric language contact.” The workshop was organized by Hiwa Asadpour, Carolina Plaza Pust, and Manfred Sailer and is part of the activities of the initiative DALC (the Dynamics of Asymmetric Language Contact).

The workshop covered a number of very different language contact situtations, including the contact between sign-languages and spoken languages.

The workshop was not only organized by members of the IEAS, but also included two presentations and two posters by the organizers: Continue reading Workshop on “Coexistence, competion and change”

Sailer in Sinn und Bedeutung 2021 proceedings

The proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 2021 are now available online. They contain a contribution by Manfred Sailer on “Use-conditional licensing of strong negative polarity items.” In the paper, Manfred further develops the theory of his 2021 HPSG paper that strong NPIs can be licensed by a negation at the non-at-issue semantics. The new paper looks at strong NPIs in German in verum focus constructions and in raising declaratives. Continue reading Sailer in Sinn und Bedeutung 2021 proceedings

Asadpour et al in HPSG22 proceedings

The proceedings of this year’s HPSG conference are now available! The volume includes a contribution by Hiwa Asadpour, Shene Hassan & Manfred Sailer on “Non-wh relatives in English and Kurdish: Constraint on grammar and use.” The paper is based on Shene’s work on relative clauses in English and Kurdish, Hiwa’s fieldwork on varieties of Kurdish, and Manfred’s work on non-at-issue meaning. Continue reading Asadpour et al in HPSG22 proceedings

Hiwa on Minority Languages and Inter-ethnic Peace

Hiwa Asadpour will give an online  talk on “Minority languages and inter-ethnic peace through a linguistic perspective” at Hiroshima University. The event is  organized by the Network for Education and Research on Peace and Sustainability.

The talk will take place December 7, 2022, 10:30-11:30 am, Japan Standard Time, i.e. 2.30-3.30 am Berlin time)


Kurdish is an Indo-European language from Iranian family. Kurdish is spoken in various regions, such as the west and northeast of Iran, Continue reading Hiwa on Minority Languages and Inter-ethnic Peace

Webelhuth on c-command constraints in German

Gert Webelhuth’s paper on “C-command constraints in German: A corpus-based investigation” has been published ahead of print in Zeitschrift für Sprachwissenschaft.

In the paper, Gert addresses the role of c-command constraints in the grammar of three phenomena in German: relative quantifier scope, quantificational binding, and negative polarity. He presents the results of a large corpus study that demonstrate empirically that scope of one quantifier over another, quantificational binding, and Continue reading Webelhuth on c-command constraints in German

Asadpour publishes cross-linguistic corpus study

Hiwa Asadpour (IEAS and JSPS International Fellow at University of Tokyo) has just published a paper in the journal Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory on “Parts of speech and the placement of Targets in the corpus of languages in northwestern Iran.”

This study applies a corpus-based quantitative approach to the word order typology and linguistic theories about word order in several genetically unrelated language varieties in northwestern Iran. Continue reading Asadpour publishes cross-linguistic corpus study

Asadpour et al. at HPSG 2022

Hiwa Asadpour, Shene Hassan & Manfred Sailer sketch an analysis of English and Sōrānī Kurdish non-wh relatives in their talk at HPSG 2022 (July 29-31, 2022) on “Non-wh relatives in English and Kurdish: Constraints on grammar and use.” In both languages, there is variation between bare relatives and relatives introduced by a function word, that and ka respectively. The authors discuss some aspects of social meaning that is attached to the choice between the bare and the non-bare variant. Continue reading Asadpour et al. at HPSG 2022