Print

Print


English has a distinction between restrictive relative clauses (which
provide information necessary for identifying the referent, or which
restrict the set of possible referents) and non-restrictive relative
clauses (which merely provide additional background information on an
already-determined referent set). But Russian, for example, does not
bother with that distinction. So, while I have no idea what the
distribution of this feature in natlangs generally is (there doesn't
seem to be a WALS feature for it), there is clearly variation.

In contrast, there is no way to distinguish restrictive vs.
non-restrictive adjectives (apart from relativizing a predicate
adjective clause) in English. So, now I'm wondering, is there any
natlang precedent for a regular (either syntactic or morphological)
distinction between restrictive and non-restrictive attributive
adjectives? If not, is there a conlang precedent known to the List?

-l.