Christophe Grandsire wrote:

> We'd say: "l'adoption d'Irčne par John". The use of an agent complement ("par"
> is the preposition used to include the agent in a passive sentence) as noun
> complement shows that the structure is seen as passive in French:

Interesting!  In Early ModE, the regular preposition of the agent was
in fact "of" rather than "by", so that passives and subjective
genitives were in a sense the same thing:

        And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return
         to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.
        (Matt. 2:12, 1611 trans.)

where more modern language would require "warned by God".  But in fact
I suppose that "John's adoption of Irene" takes that order because
it is underlyingly SVO.

Not to perambulate             || John Cowan <[log in to unmask]>
    the corridors               ||
during the hours of repose     ||
    in the boots of ascension.  \\ Sign in Austrian ski-resort hotel