In this paper I am going to examine Noun Phrases for that I will follow Radford’s analysis. In chapter 4 of Radford’s “Transformational Grammar” he looks at Noun Phrases. He argues that apart from word-level categories and phrase-level categories, there is also another level between this two. ( For instance: N-bar) In order to support his analysis, he considers English Noun Phrases. The aim of my paper is to try whether the analysis works for the Hungarian language or not. To achieve my aim I had translated all the examples from the chapter and in the end I have showed possible structures for Hungarian Noun Phrases.
Redford’s first example is: a) The king of England. b) The Hungarian equivalent is: b) Anglia kiri?? lya There are two obvious differences in the Hungarian language: 1. there is no article before Anglia, because it is a proper noun. 2. the order of the words is different (the possessor precedes the possessed). To prove that the king of England is a Noun Phrase, Radford gives a genitive S inflection to it. The same can be done with the Hungarian Noun Phrase. a) The king of England’s crown. b) Anglia kiri?? lyi?? nak a koroni?? ja. In the English example there is no determiner in front of the possessed unlike in the Hungarian.
In the English Noun Phrase the sequence [of England] is a Prepositional Phrase constituent, because it can be coordinated with another Prepositional Phrase. The Hungarian equivalent [of England] and [of Empire] are Noun Phrases and they can also be coordinated. a) The king [pp of England] and [pp of the Empire] b) Anglia i?? s a birodalom kiri?? lya. As can be seen from the above examples Hungarian is a head-last, but English is a head-first language. In Hungarian all constituents are in front of the head noun while in English all constituents follow the head, except the determiner, which precedes it.
Radford uses some further pieces of evidence to demonstrate that [the king] is a single NP constituent. In the English example, this can be showed in ‘shared constituent coordination’. a) He is the king, and she is the queen, [pp of England] b) O Anglia kiri?? lya, i?? s O (pedig) a kiri?? lynoje. In this case the only difference is that in the Hungarian copula is not obligatory as it is in English. [of England] can be a shared constituent of two heads [the king] and [the queen], because this phenomena is ‘shared constituent coordination’. The differences between them is that in the later the shared constituent precedes the two heads.
Radford also argues that multiple Determiners sequences are ill-formed in English, yet they can be grammatical in Hungarian, like “Ez a ki?? nyv”. However, the order of the determiners is crucial. If the order is reversed then it results in an ungrammatical sequence: A ez ki?? nyv. Each of the examples which contains a sequence of just two Determiners. In English all of these are ungrammatical. Almost all are ungrammatical in Hungarian, too except those where a definite article comes before a possessive pronoun. English: *[D the] [D the] king of England Hungarian: [a] [a] Anglia kiri?? lya.
English: [D the] [D this] king of England Hungarian: [a] [ez] Anglia kiri?? lya English: [D a] [D the] king of England Hungarian: [egy] [a] Anglia kiri?? lya English:[D our] [D your] king of England Hungarian: [mi] [ti] Anglia kiri?? lya English: [D the] [D our] king of England Hungarian: [a] [mi] Anglia kiri?? lya English: [D that] [D our] king of England Hungarian: [az] [a mi] Anglia kiri?? lya English: [an] [our] king of England Hungarian: [egy] [mi] Anglia kiri?? lya In Hungarian [egy] is indefinite and [a] is definite article as in English [a]is indefinite and [the] is definite.
But in Hungarian an expression as below is also possible: [D az] [D a] ki?? nyv. Which is in English: [D that] [D a] book. [D ez] [D a] ki?? nyv. Which is in English: [D this] [D a] book. It is ungrammatical to use Determiner + Possessive sequences, but in Hungarian only the unspecific is ungrammatical “Egy i?? n ki?? nyvem”, while the specific is grammatically “Az i?? n ki?? nyvem”. Although the order is important. “i?? n az ki?? nyvem”. a) a my book. ‘egy i?? n ki?? nyvem’. b) A book of mine ‘az egyik ki?? nyvem’. It seems that in English the article always has to come strictly in front of the head.
In other words, the article and the head have to be strictly adjacent. Conclusion: In this paper I have compared the different structure of the Hungarian and English noun phrases. I found that there are similarities in these two languages e. g. : they both have the same constituents within the NP (determiner, complement, adjunct). Despite all these similarities, there are also significant differences. The most important difference is the ordering of the head and the other constituents. In English the head comes first, i. e. : it is a head first language.
In Hungarian the opposite is true: it is the head that follows all the constituents, i.e. : it is a head last language. Reference: Radford, A. 1988. Transformational Grammar: A First Course. CUP, Cambridge: 167-216 Katalin eds. The Syntactic structure of Hungarian. San Diego-New York: Academic Press. 1-90. i??. Kiss Katalin (1998) Mondattan (Syntax), in: i??. Kiss Katalin-Kifer, Ferenc. Pi?? ter. i?? j magyar nyelvtan (New Hungarian Grammar). Budapest: Osiris, 15-184. i??. Kiss Katalin (to appear) The Hungarian noun phrase is like the English noun phrase. Laczki?? , Tibor (1995a) The Syntax of Hungarian Noun Phrases: A Lexical-Function Approach. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang.