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State the function of the infinitive. Translate into Russian.

The problem of English articles has been the subject of hot dis­cussions for many years. Today the most disputable questions con­cerning the system of articles in English are the following: the identification of the article status in the hierarchy of language units, the number of articles, their categorial and pragmatic functions.

There exist two basic approaches to the problem of the article status: some scholars consider the article a self-sufficient word which forms with the modified noun a syntactic syntagma; others identify the article with the morpheme-like element which builds up with the nounal stem a specific morph.

In recent works on the problem of article determination of English nouns, more often than not an opinion is expressed that in the 'hierarchy of language units the article occupies a peculiar place - the place intermediary between the word and the morpheme.

In the light of the oppositional theory the category of article de­termination of the noun is regarded as one which is based on two binary oppositions: one of them is upper, the other is lower. The op­position of the higher level operates in the whole system of articles and contrasts the definite article with the noun against the two other forms of article determination of the noun - the indefinite article and the meaningful absence of the article. The opposition of the lower level operates within the sphere of realizing the categorial meaning of non-identification (the sphere of the weak member of the upper op­position) and contrasts the two types of generalization - the relative generalization and the absolute generalization. As a result, the sys­tem of articles in English is described as one consisting of three arti­cles - the definite article, the indefinite article, and the zero article, which, correspondingly, express the categorial functions (meanings) of identification, relative generalization, and absolute generalization. The article paradigm is generalized for the whole system of the common nouns in English and is transpositionally outstretched into the subsystems of proper nouns and Unica (unique nouns) as well as .into the system of pronouns.


1. What are the categorial ( "part of speech") properties of a noun?

2. What does the peculiarity of expressing gender distinctions in English consist in?

3. What differentiates the category of gender in English from that in Rus­sian?

4. What makes the category of case in English disputable?

5.What are the strong and weak points of the "prepositional", "position­al", and "postpositional" case theories?

6. What ensures a peculiar status of "’s"?

7. What are the main approaches to the treatment of the article?

8. What shows the intermediate (between the word and the morpheme) sta­tus of the article?

9. What are the categorial meanings of the three articles?



Ex.1 Open the brackets and account for the choice of the casal form of the noun:a)



1. He noticed that the (face + the + taxi + driver) in the photograph inside the cab resembled, in many ways, the (painter + face) (Saroyan).

2. Here he was, proudly resigned to the loneliness which is (man + lot), ready and able to write, and to say yes, with no strings attached (Saroyan).


3. But as Soapy set foot inside the (restaurant+door) the (head waiter+eye)fell upon his fraued trusers and decadent shoes (o. Henry).

4. “I’m afraid I won’t be able to”, he said, after a (moment+hesitation) (Fitsgerald).


5. He was tired from the (day + work) and tired with longing, and sitting on the (edge + the bed) had the effect of deepening his weariness (Cheever).

6. The (voice + childhood) had never gladdened its flimsy structures; the (patter + restless little feet) had never consecrated the one rugged high­ way between the two (rows + tents + rough buildings) (O.Henry).


7. But now Yellowhammer was but a (mountain + camp), and nowhere in it were the roguish, expectant eyes, opening wide at (dawn + the en­chanting day); the eager, small hands to reach for (Santa + bewildering hoard); the elated, childish voicings of the (season + joy), such as the (coming good things + the warmhearted Cherokee) deserved (O.Henry).

8. “You know? Clayton, that (boy+her), doesn’t seem to get a job…” (Cheever).


Ex. 2 Comment on the oppositional reduction of the categorial nounal forms:


a) the category of number

1. There's many a poor respectable mother who doesn't get half the fuss­ing and attention which is lavished on some of these girls! (James).

2. But Hamilton drinks too much and all this crowd of young people drink too much (Fitzgerald).

3. He won't be retiring for another eighteen months (Christie).

4. In her grace, at once exquisite and hardy, she was that perfect type of American girl that makes one wonder if the male is not being sacrificed to it, much as, in the last century, the lower strata in England were sacrificed to produce the governing class (Fitzgerald).

b) the category of case

1. The car speed was so slow that it seemed to be crawling (Cheever).

2. Music's voice went to his heart (O.Henry).

3. The hearth was swept, the roses on the piano were reflected in the polish of the broad top, and there was an album of Schubert waltzes on the rack (Cheever).

4. He remembered reading - in a John D. MacDonald novel, he thought — that every modern motel room in America seems filled with mirrors (King).

c) the category of gender

1. The old man was soon asleep and dreamed of the ocean and his golden beaches (Hemingway).

2. The moon was rising, blood-red. The boy was looking at her thinking that he had never seen so red a moon (Galsworthy).

3. She shuddered. The child, his own child, was only an "it" to him (Lawrence).

4. When Alice was speaking to the Mouse, she noticed that he was trem­bling all over with fright (Carroll).

d) the category of article determination


1 . And if you do well on "Emergency" there are the first-class thrill shows, like "Hazard" and "Underwater Perils", with their nation­ wide coverage and enormous prizes. And then comes the really big time (Sheckley).

3. He closed his eyes again and remembered, with mild astonishment, a time when he had been in the trouble (Sheckley).

4. The breakers leaped at him, staggering him, while the boys yelled with ecstasy; the returning water curled threateningly around his feet as it hurried back to sea (Fitzgerald).

5. It was a white world on which dark trees and tree masses stood under a sky keen with frost (Lawrence).

Ex. 3 Analyze the categorial features of the underlined word forms in the sentence:

The boy was devouring cakes, while the anxious-looking aunt tried to convince the Grahams that her sister's only son could do no mischief.

Study the MODEL:

We had just finished the cocktails when the door was flung open and the Morstens's girl came in, followed by a boy.


the cocktails - the nounal form is marked by the expression of the categori­al meanings of plurality and definitness. It is unmarked in the categories of gender and case;


the door - the nounal form is marked by the expression of the category of article determination, and is unmarked in the ex­pression of the categories of case, number, and gender;


the Morstens 's - the nounal form is marked by the expression of the catego­rial meanings of plurality, of identification of the referent, and of animateness (the strong member of the upper opposition of the category of gender);


the girl - the nounal form is marked by the expression of the categorial meanings of identification of the referent, and of the feminine gender. At the same time it is the unmarked member of the oppositions in the categories of case and number;


a boy - the nounal form is marked by the expression of the categorial mean­ing of the masculine gender, and is the unmarked member of the oppo­sitions in the categories of case, number, and article determination.

State the function of the infinitive. Translate into Russian.

1. A man must have something bigger than himself to believe in. (Jones) 2. It was impossible not to invite the Butiers for both afternoon and evening. (Dreiser) 3. The heat and dust were enough to strangle you. (Cain) 4. To cut a long story short, the infant that's just gone out of the room is not your son. (Maugham) 5....the next thing to be done is to move away from this house. (Eliot) 6. All the deep maternity in her awoke, never to sleep again. (Buck) 7. He paused as if to find a way to phrase his next thoughts. (Mailer) 8. Nobody asked you to come out here. I didn't ask you to stay. I told you to go while it was daylight. (Faulkner) 9. It was too hot to go out into the town. (Hemingway) 10. The prospective buyer is someone who is not, to put it mildly, a supporter of female emancipation. To consent to this sale would be to consent to change the character of the newspaper altogether. (Murdoch) 11. He hat! been one of the first to become interested in the development of the street-car system. (Dreiser) 12. The floor of the forest was soft to walk oa.. (Hemingway) 13. He was a man to attract immediate sympathy. (Maugham) 14. He knew he must say anything at all in order to establish communication with her. (Horgan) 15. After all, you're young enough to be my son. (Clark) 16. To begin with, he did not like the way his editor... had spoken to him that morning. (Priestley) 17. To make the real decisions, one's got to have the real power. (Snow) 18. To know all is to forgive all. (Priestley) 19. Other people, men particularly, found it difficult to face Cowperwood's glazed stare. (Dreiser) 20. It must be awful to have a brilliant future behind you. (Snow) 21. She makes a gesture as if to touch him. (Shaw) 22. Indeed, she had nowhere to go. (Murdoch) 23. To speak frankly, 1 am not in favour of long engagements. (Wilde) 24. He found the sky so pallid as to be almost invisible. (Baum) 25. He dropped back, so as to let me get on a level with him. (Collins) 26. When he met Savina at the station, she came to him with a joyous expression of anticipation to find his troubled silence. (Wilson) 27. Rubin did not, in any case, find it easy to be as direct as Roger. (Snow) 28. True insincerity is hard to find. (Priestley) 29. She leaned forward with kindled eyes as if to impress the word on the inspector. (Lindsay) 30. She's a spoiled child not to be trusted. (Galsworthy) 31. It is against all ethical concepts of medical science to pronounce a death verdict to a gravely ill person. (Baum) 32. His age was difficult to guess. (Wilson) 33. They were the last to come. (Maugham) 34. I awoke a little after sunrise to find Evan gone. (Hansford Johnson) 35. Truth to tell, he wanted to say a great deal. (Dreiser) 36. Her large eyes were of a blue so pale as to be almost white. (Murdoch) 37. Her first proceeding... was to unlock a tall press, bring out'several bottles,, and pour some of the contents of each into my mouth. (Dickens) 38. To lie is not my custom. Too much complication and uncomfort. (Baum) 39. I had many weary hours still to wait through. To while away the time, I looked at my letters. (Collins) 40. To begin with, Mrs. Anderson is a pleasanter person to Hye with than Mrs. Dudgeon. (Shaw) 41. With another look round at the furniture, as if to gauge his sister's exact position, Soames went out towards Piccadilly. (Galsworthy) 42. Three or four plans suggested themselves, only to be ruled out by their self-evident absurdity. (Hansford Johnson) 43. But the heat of the afternoon was, to say the least, oppressive. (Salinger)

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